Chad DeSoto's mother takes the stand, defense seeks acquittal - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Chad DeSoto's mother takes the stand, defense seeks acquittal

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by Krystal Paco

Guam - More tears are shed in Judge Anita Sukola's courtroom as prosecution calls on its final witness in the Chad DeSoto trial. After two weeks and over forty witness testimonies, prosecution rests its case and defense begins theirs. Yusuke Sugiyama may not have witnessed DeSoto take a fatal stab at his wife and grandmother on the night of February 12, 2013, but he does remember hearing his wife's screams.

"I grabbed my younger daughter and ran but the man with a knife came after us," he recalled.

Although Sugiyama had sustained a stab to his chest and his two daughters suffered from cuts and broken teeth, when he found his wife Rie Sugiyama and grandmother Kazuko Uehara, both were laying in a pool of blood on the Tumon sidewalk.

The next time he saw them, both were pronounced dead in the hospital.

Following Sugiyama's testimony, prosecution rested its case. Immediately after, defense motioned for a judgment of acquittal, which the court denied.

This afternoon the defense began its case in chief calling on Dr. Leopoldo Arcilla who conducted the toxicology test on DeSoto following his rampage through Tumon.

"It was all negative," he stated. "Negative for amphetamines." He further confirmed that the test was negative for cocaine, for opiates, and for THC.

The defense then called on DeSoto's first cousin, Michelle Fatovic, who said she observed her once outgoing cousin hideaway in his room and communicate with friends and familyless - what she says followed the death of DeSoto's grandfather and his parent's divorce.

Following the Tumon tragedy, she and family visited DeSoto in prison. "When we saw him, when I saw him, he looked at me like he didn't recognize me," she said.

Joseph Hernandez also took the stand and vouched that his once close friend has turned into a hermit.

Hernandez admits he was scared and worried, but didn't know how to help. "What he told me really lost me and I didn't know what to properly do. It came out of nowhere and I didn't know how to handle it. The things he told me," he said.

DeSoto's younger brother, Mason, also testified that his brother talked of seeing "a bunch of souls scattered across the horizon." He added, "He saw god handpicking each one of the souls. At one point he asked me if I thought he was going crazy."

On another occasion, Mason says his brother talked about Satan. "He thought that the termites were a sign from Satan - The Devil - and he was very freaked out about that," he explained.

In tears, DeSoto's mother Rae took the stand and recalled Chad's sudden fear of rain. "It was raining and he was in his boxers and he was hurdled next to the door and I asked him what was wrong and he said the rain. It's raining. I said yes its raining. He said I don't want the rain to touch me. He was scared that if the rain touched him he would die. I told him who's telling you those lies?" she remembered.

To prove to him wrong, she went into the rain and invited her son to join him where she remembers him smiling.

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