TAMPA —After deliberating Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday, a jury will convene again today to try to reach a verdict in a first-degree murder case.
Jurors are deciding whether Eric James Tate, 23, killed Heather Romance, a 2-year-old Lutz girl he babysat in 2006.
Prosecutors say Tate threw or hit Heather, causing fatal brain injuries. It produced testimony from doctors who said that in 30 years they had never seen such serious injuries from a minor, accidental fall.
But the defense says Heather fell off a sofa and hit her head on the floor. It produced a videotaped re-creation of that scenario using a toddler-sized crash-test dummy. It also showed the jury a real-life video of an unnamed 2-year-old girl who died from brain injuries when she fell off a small play set in her family's garage.