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South Dakota Victims

Man accused of stabbing wife to death tried to blame their 12 year old daughter.


PIERRE, South Dakota (AP) -- A man charged with killing his wife  testified  that it was his 12-year-old daughter who committed the crime, but he said he tried to cover it up.

Brad Reay, 47, took the stand at his trial. 

Their daughter, Haylee, testified against her father, denying his claims that he was covering up for her.

Ttwo days after the mother disappeared  last February. her bady was discovered. Some of the wounds in her chest showed a knife had been forced in all the way to its hilt.

Reay said his daughter was extremely upset after they told her about the possibility of divorce when he discovered his wife was having an affair on him.

Reay said he awoke in the night to find his daughter standing over her mother with a knife in her hand.   He said,. Haylee was "catatonic or in shock" and did not respond when he asked her what she'd done. Reay said his daughter did not recover from that state until after he had cleaned blood off her and placed her in bed.

Reay said he tried to make his wife's death look like she had been raped in order to divert attention from his daughter.

"I plan to go to jail for her," he said. "I didn't want her to get in trouble."

Haylee, now 13, testified last week that she never would have hurt her mother, and said she was afraid of her father and had never been very close to him.

Jurors could find Reay guilty of either first-degree murder, punishable by a mandatory term of life in prison without chance of parole, or manslaughter, which carries a sentence of up to life in prison.



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