According to Facebook messages ruled admissible in court, Jessica Dutro’s motive was hate. She wrote to her boyfriend Brian Canady that she thought her son Zachary was gay, because “he walks and talks like it. Ugh.”
Dutro added that Canady would have to do some “work” on the boy.
The Oregonian reports that Zachary was brought to a Portland hospital in August of last year, where he was discovered to have had trauma to his abdomen that caused tears in his bowel. He was put on life support, but died of his injuries two days later.
Dr. Danny Leonhardt testified that the boy was beyond help by the time that he arrived at the hospital, saying “we didn’t see him until he essentially was dead. We didn’t get a chance to fix him.”
Zachary’s eight-year-old sister testified against her mother in court this week. Last year, she explained to detectives how her brother “got dead”: “Jessica and Brian, they kept hitting him and punching him… He didn’t listen to them so they kicked him and punched him and stuff and they kept doing it and doing it.”
Dutro is charged with murder, murder by abuse and second-degree assault. She blames her boyfriend, Brian Canady.
Canady pleaded guilty earlier this month to first-degree manslaughter, and second-degree assault. Under his plea deal, the murder charge was dropped. He is now testifying against Dutro.
Prosecutors also noted that a search of Dutro’s computer revealed that on the day Zachary’s life support was terminated, she searched terms such as “anger management” and “parenting classes,” and perused online listings for “free stuff” and sex with strangers.