Closing Arguments Heard In Patterson Case, Jury Deliberating
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The jury heard closing arguments and began deliberating in the murder trial for the Sioux Falls man accused of killing his girlfriend’s 2-year-old son. Patterson has pleaded not guilty to 2nd degree murder, 1st degree manslaughter or aggravated battery of an infant in the death of Tyrese Ruffin back in October of 2013.
The jury was narrowed down from 16 jurors to 12 Tuesday afternoon. The group of nine women and three men began deliberating just at around 2:30 p.m. This is what they heard in closing arguments before they left to decide Patterson’s fate.
Prosecuting Attorney Laura Shattuck stood in front of the jury for about an hour, explaining why Patterson is guilty of murdering 2-year-old Tyrese Ruffin. She started by reading a text Patterson sent to the boy’s mother a month before the incident occurred. He wrote to her “Me and my ways of disciplining ain’t changing”. Shattuck said Patterson often complained about the toddler’s whining and they disagreed about how to discipline him. She also brought up previous incidents with his ex-girlfriend’s children, in which Patterson left marks on one of them after spanking him.
Shattuck told the jury that on the night of Oct. 9, 2013, Patterson got fed up when Ty wanted to change the channel on the on the T.V., that he snapped, and administered four blows to little Ty’s head, which caused his life to end.
Shattuck said even though Patterson told police he did everything he could could save Ty, he called Doohen before calling 911. Shattuck said the 911 call wasn’t consistent with him giving the boy CPR. She instructed the jury that if someone fails to act there’s motive.
In the defense’s closing arguments, which lasted an hour-and-a-half, Attorney Tim Rensch said that there was no indication that Ty had been whining while in Patterson’s care or that he wanted the channel changed. He reminded the jury that Patterson’s accounts of the boy choking were extremely consistent and he cooperated with police.
Rensch asked the jury how it was even possible for Patterson to hit the boy hard enough to create force greater than him falling from a two-story building like doctors testified and not have any bruising or marks to the outside of Ty’s head.
The defense contends that Ty choking, prolonged CPR, and a blood clotting disorder caused hemorrhages in Ty’s brain and retinas.
Rensch said in the 911 tape, you can tell Patterson was scared and said that was ‘not the voice and emotion of a killer’. Rensch said to the jury, “Just because there’s one tragedy doesn’t mean there should be two.” He said, “Find him not guilty.”
The state has the burden of proof in this case.They have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Patterson killed Tyrese Ruffin.
If the jury does find Patterson guilty, he could spend the rest of his life in prison.
Stick with KDLT News for the latest from the courtroom.