An Aurora man charged with fatal child abuse in his daughter's disappearance has acknowledged that the girl was already dead when he reported she was missing in 2005.
Aaron Thompson faces 60 counts involving his daughter Aarone, who has never been found. Thompson faces 54 years in prison if convicted on all counts, which include allegations that Aarone was malnourished, beaten and denied proper medical care.
In opening statements Friday, Chief Deputy District Attorney Robert Chappell told jurors that all evidence suggests Aarone -- who would have been 6 when she was reported missing in November 2005 -- had been dead at least two years.
Later, defense attorney Lucienne Boyd said Thompson's story that his daughter ran away because of an argument over a cookie was a desperate attempt to cover up Aarone's death at the hands of Thompson's live-in girlfriend, Shely Lowe, who died in 2006 from heart problems.
Boyd said Lowe's teenage brother and one of her sons are responsible for testimony pointing to Thompson, which was developed out of loyalty to Lowe.
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