BOSTON (CBS) — Jurors in the trial of a man accused of killing a two-year-old girl boarded buses Thursday morning to tour locations relevant to the case.
Among the places they visited was the Winthrop beach where the body of little Bella Bond washed up in June of 2015.
Michael McCarthy, 37, is charged with first-degree murder in Bella’s death.
Prosecutors say he struck and killed her because he was obsessed with the occult and believed she was a “demon.”
The defense, however, claims the child’s mother, Rachelle Bond, killed her daughter.
On Tuesday, the first day of the trial, jurors heard emotional testimony from the woman who found the child’s body in a trash bag on a Deer Island beach while walking her dog.
The jury toured that area, as well as the Gillette plant in South Boston, McCarthy and Rachelle Bond’s Dorchester apartment, McCarthy’s dad’s plumbing business in Quincy, and a rough industrial area of grass and rubble across from the Black Falcon Terminal in South Boston where prosecutors say McCarthy dumped Bella’s body into Boston Harbor.
At the Boston Harbor location, jurors were walked through that area two at a time and instructed to look down to the spot where her body allegedly went into the water.
After the Bella’s body washed up on shore, authorities released computer-generated images of the little girl, who came to be known as “Baby Doe.”
They also released photos of her clothing and a blanket she was found with.
WBZ Legal Analyst Harry Manion says field trips like this are called jury views and are more and more common.
“The scene of the crime is emotional, because you’re human and you envision that you see the water slapping up on Winthrop Beach and it’s cold,” Manion said. “It’s a major added expense and it also delays the testimony in the trial.”
Michael Sprinsky, a former friend of Michael McCarthy, testified on Wednesday that he recognized the blanket in the photo from his time living with the couple and Bella.
He told the court he moved out after several weeks of living with them because he was disturbed by McCarthy’s occult beliefs.
Sprinsky said he did an internet search for the photos after Rachelle Bond told him–months after the girl was found–that McCarthy had killed Bella.
Testimony is expected to resume on Friday with Sprinsky returning to the stand.