Goforth murder trial told of litany of injuries found on child, 4

A doctor specializing in child abuse told a Regina murder trial that a four-year-old girl was covered with cuts, bruises, and scabs when she was examined in 2012.

WARNING: This story contains graphic details

Tammy and Kevin Goforth are charged with second-degree murder in the death of a four-year-old girl on Aug. 2, 2012. They're also charged with causing bodily harm to a two-year-old girl. Both girls were in their care in 2012. (Facebook)

A doctor specializing in child abuse told a Regina murder trial that a four-year-old girl was covered with cuts, bruises, and scabs when she was examined in 2012.

Jury members in the trial of Tammy and Kevin Goforth, which is now in its second week, heard testimony Monday from Dr. Sharon Leibel.

She's a Regina physician who for 23 years, court heard, has been documenting information in cases in which child abuse is suspected.

She was called the day the four-year-old girl was brought to the hospital in 2012.

"Skin over skeleton," was the way Leibel described the girl she saw.

She described multiple bruises and injuries on the girl's head and neck.

That included a scab and bruising her lips, a black bruise on her cheek, a red-purple mark on her chin and a matching one on her upper chest.

Leibel went on to describe bruising in both of the girl's armpits and legs, as well as injuries around her wrists.

She also described spots of raw skin on her back.

"Essentially it looked like her little back had been buckshot," Leibel said.

Court heard previously that the girl was suffering from malnutrition and dehydration and was in cardiac arrest when she arrived at the hospital. She was taken off life support about a day later, on Aug. 2, 2012.

During the testimony, the defence lawyers objected multiple times when Leibel was speaking about what may have caused some of the girls' injuries. 

"You're asking me to tell you the whole truth and nothing but the truth, but I can't explain a medical finding," Leibel said in response to the objections.


During the brief cross-examination, the doctor was questioned on whether she was using objective medical terms or feelings to describe the injuries. 

In her notes, Leibel had wrote the word "horrifying".

Monday's gruesome testimony took a toll on the girl's mother, who cried throughout the proceedings.

The Goforths are also accused of injuring the girl's younger sister, 2. Both children had been in the care of the Goforths since late 2011.

Here is a timeline of key events that occurred prior to the trial of Kevin and Tammy Goforth. The Regina couple is charged with killing a girl, 4, and harming her sister. 1:00

In previous testimony, jurors heard that the two children were in seven different homes in 18 months after being taken into care by officials in 2010.

The trial before Queen's Bench Justice Ellen Gunn and a jury is expected to continue through this week and the next.

Police searched the home of Kevin and Tammy Goforth on Aug. 1, 2012. They're on trial for second-degree murder in the death of a four-year-old girl who had been in their care. They're also charged with causing bodily harm to her two-year-old sister. (CBC)