'This is one of the worst cases I've ever seen'

Jury hears from pathologist in Glenara Bates trial
Posted at 12:48 PM, Sep 23, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-23 19:32:03-04

CINCINNATI -- Some Hamilton County jurors were in tears when a forensic pathologist explained the findings of a toddler's autopsy in court Friday.

On day three of the death penalty case against Glen Bates, the father accused of torturing his 2-year-old daughter to death, jurors heard from Hamilton County Deputy Coroner Dr. Jennifer Schott. 

Schott performed the autopsy on Glenara Bates and called her death "one of the worst I've ever seen."

The deputy coroner said Glenara Bates weighed only 13 pounds when she died, less than half the average weight of a 2-year-old. Schott also testified that Glenara was covered in "C-shaped scars," determined to be bite marks.

RELATED: Sister testifies in 'tortured' toddler trial, says she saw father slam girl against wall

Glen Bates admitted on videotape that he bit the girl on her arms and chest, but said in court Thursday that he was only playing with her and not trying to hurt her. He blames Glenara's mother, Andrea Bradley, for the injuries. Bradley is also on trial for the girl's death.

Schott also highlighted severe diaper rash that extended from Glenara's lower back to her thighs. During Bates' taped interrogation, he said Glenara was often made to sleep in a downstairs bathtub because of a bed-wetting problem. Prosecutors said the tub was filled with feces.

The wounds on the girl's legs and back are consistent with being beaten with a belt, Schott testified. Detectives believe Glen Bates used a hot pink child's belt to beat Glenara; Glen Bates said the girl's mother often beat her with a yellow belt while he was at work.

Hemorrhaging on Glenara's brain was likely caused by someone holding the girl by her legs and swinging her into a wall or door frame, Schott testified.

The deputy coroner said she believes Glenara could have survived had she been taken to a hospital.

"My opinion in the cause of death is battered child's syndrome," Schott said in court Friday. "The manner of death is homicide."

Jurors viewed more than 70 photos from the toddler's autopsy, detailing bruises, cuts and sores on her small body. Glen Bates' attorney tried to have the photos barred from evidence, but the 70 photos are only 25 percent of those taken during the autopsy.

The Hamilton County coroner, Dr. Lakshmi Sammarco, was initially scheduled to testify Friday, but she is recovering from a broken foot. Sammarco ruled that Glenara died of starvation in March 2015.

During cross-examination on Friday, Schott testified that she can't be certain who caused the injuries to Glenara.

Closing arguments are set for Monday.

WCPO reporter/anchor Timyka Artist contributed to this report.