5-year-old boy was abused for weeks before death, Calgary trial hears
Five-year-old Emilio Perdomo, is seen in this undated handout photo entered as a court exhibit by the Alberta Courts. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Alberta Courts
Lauren Krugel, The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, June 20, 2019 3:08PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, June 20, 2019 7:34PM EDT
CALGARY -- A more prosperous life was supposed to be in store for Emilio Perdomo when he was brought to Canada from Mexico in February 2015.
But instead, a Crown prosecutor says, the little boy endured weeks of abuse at the hands of his grandfather, who considered the boy an "ungrateful demon" and whose "evil spirit needed to be cleansed from the house."
Shane Parker delivered closing arguments Thursday in the Calgary manslaughter trial of Allan Perdomo Lopez, 59, who is accused of killing five-year-old Emilio.
Parker said the boy was assaulted for the last time on July 9, 2015.
"Emilio was ungrateful. It was hot. Allan Perdomo had worked all day," the prosecutor said.
The trial heard the boy was taken to hospital unconscious that evening and underwent emergency brain surgery. Emilio never woke up and died eight days later.
An autopsy determined the cause of death was blunt force head trauma.
Parker showed the court photos of the boy in Mexico and soon after his arrival in Canada, smiling and free of any visible injuries.
He contrasted those with photos taken from May 2015 until his autopsy two months later, revealing bruises and scars over the boy's body in various stages of healing.
Parker suggested the grandfather was lying when he said the abuse happened in Mexico, or that the boy was clumsy and injured himself falling down stairs or off a bike.
"Emilio did not spontaneously become a klutz in mid-May," Parker said, adding there's also no evidence the boy had a bleeding disorder.
"What is left? Abuse."
Earlier this week, the Crown played a police recording from the family minivan of the accused praying in Spanish.
"I wanted to help that child with all my soul, Lord ΓÇª I didn't want to kill that child," Perdomo Lopez said, according to an English transcript of the recording.
Parker told Queen's Bench Justice Richard Neufeld, who is hearing the case without a jury, that he should take note of Perdomo Lopez's choice of words. They amount to an admission of guilt, he said.
"It does not say 'death.' It does not say 'die.' It does not say 'accident.' It says 'kill.' Take him at his word," Parker said.
The defence did not call evidence.
On Wednesday, the accused's lawyer unsuccessfully tried to have his client acquitted through a directed verdict.
Darren Mahoney argued the prosecution's case is too weak to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Perdomo Lopez committed an unlawful act that caused the boy's death.
But the Crown said in his closing argument that he does not have to prove what exact action killed the boy. Parker said there have been several murder convictions in cases where there weren't even bodies to examine.
"You have unguarded evidence from a prayer to God. You have that in the context of child abuse. You have medical evidence and you will put all that evidence together using common sense," Parker said.
Mahoney is to respond to the Crown's closing arguments next Thursday.