BUSHNELL (AP) - A six-member jury is expected to begin deliberating following closing arguments in the case of a toddler who was strangled in her crib by a pet python.
Testimony concluded Wednesday with lawyers for the child's 21-year-old mother Jaren Hare and her live-in boyfriend, 34-year-old Charles "Jason" Darnell calling the death an unpredictable accident. Prosecutors say the pair should be held accountable for failing to keep the 8-foot-6-inch albino Burmese python properly caged.
A deputy medical examiner testified Wednesday that the python wrapped itself around 2-year-old Shianna Hare's head in an attempt to eat her on July 1, 2009. Testimony revealed the snake had not been fed for a month before the attack.
Hare and Darnell face up to 35 years if convicted on third-degree murder, manslaughter and child neglect charges.