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Tonya Craft: Teacher on Trial (Day Six)

MONDAY, APRIL 19

Follow WRCB's Melydia Clewell and Callie Starnes on Twitter. Get updates from the field and courthouse at Facebook.com/WRCBtv. Legal analysis on-air from WRCB Legal Analyst McCracken Poston.

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4:10pm

Witness bought all 3 alleged victims necklaces because, "it's been a long journey."

4:05PM

Phone records show witness talked to Tonya Craft's ex-husband a lot.

4PM

Witness says to this day her child talks to counselor instead of her about abuse. Says she fears for her mother's life.

Defense asking questions about extracurricular activities that could have injured little girl rather than molestation.


3:45PM

Witness is biting lip, quivering, holding back tears at mention of her daughter's forensic exam.

Witness says when daughter was interviewed on tape, she told her there was more to tell, she couldn't tell everything.

3:40PM

Witness to defense attorney, "I pray to God this never happens to your child but I hope if it does you consul them."

3:35PM

Witness says she told her daughter that Tonya Craft might be arrested.

Witness says she didn't tell her daughter (alleged victim) what to say in interview with investigator/advocate.

Mother of alleged witness still on the stand. What an afternoon it has been.

3:25pm

Witness testimony right now covers a part of the story we can't report to avoid ID'ing the alleged victims.

2:15PM

Witness says defense attorney Scott King is purposely asking questions to confuse her.

Witness is saying more non-verbally than thru spoken responses. But we'll have to blur her face for TV.

2:10pm

If looks could kill, defense attorney wouldn't be breathing.

Now know why witness called DFCS week prior to official start of investigation: She reported child on child fondling.

Witness says she initially called child services about child-on-child abuse, she did not report Tonya Craft was involved.

2:06pm

Witness just crossed her arms.

Witness is sassy. Telling defense how to ask questions.

Witness says she called DFCS about Tonya Craft allegations 1 week before pool party that state said started the investigation.

1:50pm

Witness says if her daughter was not in the movie she started in, she would not have been allowed to see it.

Witness says her daughter started having night frights.

Conflicting details about what a child wrote with chalk at pool party, and what she told adults about why she did it.

Now we are back to the pool party. Witness says her daughter wanted to leave because Tonya Craft was mean and yelled at her.

1:35pm

Defense: "do you have a memory problem?" after she can't recall spending time w/ Tonya Craft. Witness: "are you kidding me?", asks for water

Witness testifies that #TonyaCraft spent night at her house because she got so drunk and got sick.

Witness wrote Tonya Craft a letter around time of Craft's wedding, "always remember I love you."

1:25pm

Mother on the stand has a clinched jaw, scowl on her face as Defense looks through photos from Tonya Craft's wedding.

Witness asked if daughter looks scared in picture w/Tonya Craft. Witness: "she's smiling for picture, can't tell you what she's thinking."

All pictures being shown in court right now cannot be shown on tv. It's classified as evidence.

1:20pm

Or maybe not ... being snappy with Defense as he asks about pictures of her daughter.

Witness seems to have cooled off over lunch.

Court back in session.

12:30pm

Court will resume at 1:15. Courtroom empties out as everyone heads to lunch.

NOON

Witness to defense, "you are asking me the same thing 50 times".

Mother on stand has a blank stare as she waits for the next question.

Witness asked did you want Tonya Craft to continue to be a part of daughter's life. Witness: "apparently I did".

Update 11:54am

Witness reads from book she gave Tonya Craft before alleged abuse. She reads, "thank you for being so loving."

Update 11:47am

Witness being asked about photos that show Tonya Craft and her daughter together.

Witness says her daughter never had formal acting lessons to prepare for two movies.

Witness says she contacted DEFACS prior to daughter telling her Tonya Craft molested her about kids playing "girlfriend-boyfriend" game.

Update 11:42am

Witness says daughter spent the night at #TonyaCraft's house more than once, her daughter said just once. Witness says daughter was wrong.

Update 11:21am

Witness describing when daughter told her about alleged abuse.

Testimony about time line and who did what does not match from this witness and Sherry Wilson.

Update 11:10am

Witness says she saw what other child wrote with side-walk chalk. Says it read, "sex, love, and kissing." Witness before didn't list "love"

Witness says Tonya Craft told her it was difficult to prove female on female abuse.

Update 11:03am

Witness says introduced Tonya Craft to her current husband.

Witness says her daughter didn't even know movie was scary and about abuse until it came out.

Update 10:53am

Witness is mother of victim who is a child-actor.

Witness, "I thought we were friends" when asked her relationship with TonyaCraft

Update 10:49am

Witness was a room mom for Tonya Craft's class, daughter in class.

Witness on stand is mother of one of alleged victims. I'm not using her name to protect her child.

Update 10:44am

Break's over. Mother of one of the alleged victims taking the stand.

Update 10:26am

Defense finished with questioning. Court taking a break.

Update 10:25am

Witness says she did not take picture of word written in chalk.

Update 10:22am

Witness says she didn't call police about alleged abuse.

Update 10:14am

Witness says daughter called from #TonyaCraft's house crying wanting to come home. Says her daughter said Tonya told her she couldn't leave.

Update 10:12am

Witness says her daughter spent night at Tonya Craft's house once, and she felt comfortable with it.

Update 10:08am

Witness says she, and her husband, never threatened

Update 10:07am

Witness says she requested someone else do an assessment of her daughter's performance.

Update 10:06am

Tonya Craft met with witness about her daughter's performance in class. Tonya told he she wasn't ready for 1st grade.

Update 10:03am

Witness denies that her daughter didn't like TonyaCraft for telling her she was being "mean".

Update 10:01am

Defense asks if witness had a falling out w/Tonya Craft a few months before allegations. She says no, it was a "change of friendship".

Update 9:59am

Different member of defense team questioning this witness. Scott King asking questions for first time in trial.

Update 9:58am

Witness says she has not confronted TonyaCraft about abuse. Defense now asking questions.

Update 9:55am

Witness says she had her daughter checked for abuse.

Update 9:55am

Judge hands witness a tissue. She's crying as she says she was worried for her own daughter.

Update 9:53am

Witness says she told the little girl's mom about the abuse.

Update 9:52am

Witness says little girl told her that her mommy would die if she told anyone about the abuse.

Update 9:51am

Witness says she never suspected TonyaCraft was molesting children until little girl came to her.

Update 9:50am

Witness says girl told her she was molested more than once.

Update 9:49am

Wilson says one of the alleged victims told her #TonyaCraft molested her. Witness choking up as she tells.

Update 9:42am

Wilson says the chalk incident got her and other parents talking.

Update 9:40am

Wilson says all young girls saw the words the little girl wrote.

Update 9:39am

Wilson says she did not reprimand child, instead called her mother.

Update 9:37am

Wilson testifying about a pool party at her house. Says a young girl wrote word "sex" and "kissing" on ground w/sidewalk chalk.

Update 9:33 a.m.

When witness answers questions she looks at the jury a lot.

Update 9:32 a.m.

Prosecution spending a lot of time asking questions about who witness knows and how.

Update 9:29 a.m.

Testimony began Monday morning with the prosecution's witness. She testifies she volunteered at school where Tonya Craft taught prior to her daughter being in her class.

Update 7:20 a.m.

Court resumes this morning at 9:00 a.m. in Catoosa County. The three child witnesses have completed their testimony. The state will continue trying to prove its case against Tonya Craft.

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