WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Prosecutors laid out graphic testimony on Friday during Cornell McNeal’s capital murder trial. They say he attacked and raped Letitia Davis before setting her on fire in Wichita’s Fairmount Park in 2014.
KSN News spent the day in the courtroom as prosecutors laid out more evidence against McNeal.
It was a full day for jurors as they heard multiple testimonies of the gruesome state Davis was found in and had to see photos that we won’t show you, highlighting the severe wounds left on her body.
“First question I asked her is ‘What happened?’ And she responded with three words, “I was raped,'” said Tyler Sullivan, an EMS paramedic.
The focus of day two of McNeal’s trial was to take the jury back to the night prosecutors say Davis was beaten, raped, and set on fire.
“She had the white fire blankets on her. she had no clothes on. She was completely naked. She had blood from head to toe … I could tell she had severe burns, and she had dry blood on her face, and I could see she had a severe laceration on the back of her head,” said Alley Larison, a first responding officer with the Wichita Police Department.
One of the witnesses was a fire battalion chief. He described the evidence collected and how a K-9 was used to search for accelerants.
“We determined the information available at the time that this fire was intentionally set,” said Stuart Bevis, a former battalion chief for the Wichita Fire Department.
The state later brought out a chemist who tested the samples taken that night. He testified that several samples contained accelerants.
In cross-examination, the defense spent time focusing on how accurate Davis’ memory might have been between drinking earlier that night and head injuries:
|Defense: “Multiple injuries to her face, and her head, and her neck. Right?”|
|Defense: “And these can all easily result in some serious brain damage?”|
|Sullivan: “They can all result in varying levels of damage, yes.”|
|Defense: “And that kind of brain damage can easily affect the reliability of what she’s saying?”|
|Sullivan: “Uh, perhaps.”|
The state also brought out a man who lived across the street from Fairmount Park in 2014 to testify. He told jurors he found a single shoe thrown into his yard, which matched one found at the scene.
The trial is set to pick back up on Monday.