Emotions ran high in the courtroom as several witnesses took the stand to describe the final moments of young Andre Smith’s life.
The 12-year-old’s grandfather, Andrez Martina, is charged with first-degree intentional homicide and physical abuse of a child in relation to his death on August 29, 2021. Prosecutors allege Martina used a sledgehammer and other objects to beat the boy.
In an interview with police, Martina admitted to being under the influence and blacking out during the beating, according to Fox 6.
Smith’s 8-year-old brother testified at the trial, saying he witnessed the beating and that his grandfather also hit him with a cane.
Martina testified in his own defense on Wednesday. He claimed his grandson stole $1,000 from him, wouldn’t tell him where it was and then pulled a gun on him.
“Well, once I grabbed the gun from him, and he hit the wall, everything went lights out,” Martina said.
He claimed he didn’t mean to kill the boy.
Martina waived his right to a jury trial in March, so the judge will decide the verdict.