Openings Expected In Texas Day Care Murder Trial

HOUSTON (AP) — A jury is set to begin hearing testimony in the trial of a Texas woman who is charged with murder in the death of a child in a fire at her day care facility.

Opening statements in Jessica Tata’s case are expected Wednesday morning in Houston.

The 2011 fire at Tata’s home day care killed four children and injured three others. Tata is initially being tried in the death of 16-month-old Elisa Castillo.

Prosecutors say Tata went to a store and left Elisa and the other children alone. A fire started while she was away when oil inside a frying pan on a stove ignited.

Tata’s attorneys say she didn’t intend to harm the children and shouldn’t be charged with murder.

She faces up to life in prison if convicted.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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