CAMDEN, N.J. (WTXF) - Jurors deciding the fate of a Camden County man accused of killing his son have just taken a field trip.
They went to the scene where a police dog discovered the three-year-old's body in October 2015 along the banks of the Cooper River in a wooded area of Haddon Township.
That site was turned into a memorial for the young boy. It had to be dismantled because David Creato’s lawyer was concerned it could influence the jury—mostly women—when the prosecutors would have the jury make the 6/10 of a mile walk there.
Creato, 23, is charged with murder and child endangerment in the death of his son.
Thursday’s testimony started with a detective on the stand and prosecutors continuing to play a video of police interviewing Creato at the police station, before he was charged in the case.
Earlier, Creato’s lawyers had tried to stop the video from being played for the jury, but their request was denied.
After the video, Creato’s defense lawyer asked the detective how cooperative Creato was. The defense says Creato was held in a secure room at the police station for 12 hours even though he wasn’t considered a suspect at the time.
Then, the detective talked about a stroller several people had reported seeing that day in October 2015.
Prosecutors asked the detective whether he got statements from family members and answered that one refused and got a lawyer. He also said Creato denied murdering his son, that he never yelled at Creato, but indirectly accused him of the murder.
The jury was shown a picture of where Brendan’s body was found, taken from Creato’s phone, but the defense said Creato told the detective he wanted to see his family, which he couldn’t do at the police station.
The detective also discussed walking down to the stream where Brendan’s body was found and said the boy's pants were rolled and lowered in the back, like they were being used as handle to carry his body.
Another detective returned to the stand and discussed pictures of water levels at the scene over a 24 hour period, and said the water where the body was didn't move as much as the water in the middle of the pond.
Since the defense has said Brendan walked away, prosecutors had testimony about recording another 3-year-old reenacting the route Brendan may have walked, wearing white socks to compare to the victim’s when he was found. The child actor's socks were dirty, wet and frayed, while Brendan’s socks were clean when his body was found.
Then, a sergeant with the Port Authority testified about his search, and his canine officer pulling harder towards the scent and finding the body. He checked for signs of life and found no footprints in the mud. Thursday, he went to the scene to place evidence vines out for jury.
Prosecutors say Creato killed his son because he’d become an impediment to his relationship with a teenage girlfriend. The father’s girlfriend is not charged in the case.
Creato maintains his innocence, saying his son wandered away from home on his own shortly before he was found about a mile away.
The trial takes place only on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.