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Houston Day Care Fire Trial Could Soon Be In Hands Of Jury

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(credit: Getty Images)

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A jury in Houston could soon decide the fate of a woman charged with murder after four children died in a fire at her home day care back in February 2011. Jessica Tata is accused of leaving the children who were in her care unattended. Tata is also charged in the death of one toddler as well as four counts of felony murder.

Closing arguments are scheduled Monday in the trial of Tata, who is charged in the death of toddler Elias Castillo. Testimony wrapped up late last week. Tata did not take the stand in her own defense.

According to prosecutors, Tata left the children home alone and with oil cooking on a stove burner while she went shopping. Security cameras captured her at area stores. Three children were hurt in the blaze.

Defense attorneys questioned expert witnesses to testify that the fire may have been sparked by faulty kitchen equipment including a malfunctioning stove.

Cicely C. Mitchell/ CBS Radio Houston

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