Murder Trial Begins

By: Marie Luby Email
By: Marie Luby Email

A murder trial begins for two eastern Kentucky parents in the death of their 11-month-old child.

Braxton Jamayne Miller died of a Methadone overdose in June of last year.

The commonwealth's attorney says Karen and Robert Miller showed extreme indifference to their baby's life.

Defense attorneys argue the Millers are victims of a tragic accident.

Karen Miller couldn't hold back tears as she listened to testimony about the last night she saw her baby alive, just more than a month short of his first birthday.

“He was healthy. He was well taken care of,” Attorney Valetta Browne said.

Karen and Robert Miller's attorneys say baby Braxton was part of a loving home, but admit Robert Miller brought home two Methadone pills on June 5th.

”He brought home an addiction he shared with his wife,” Attorney Bill Burt said.

Their attorneys say one of those pills got lost in a piece of furniture. Hours later the Millers took an unresponsive Braxton to the hospital, but he never woke up.

“Using Methadone, taking a Methadone tablet and laying it on the chair in a room with a toddler of this age, manifested extreme indifference to human life,” Commonwealth’s Attorney Darrell Herald said.

Emergency room workers testified that Karen Miller said she'd seen Braxton swallow a Methadone pill several hours before they went to the hospital.

“The nurse asked her, 'are you sure that's what it was?' 'yes, yes, yes, it was methadone.'” Tiffany Mies said.

Karen Miller's attorney says she saw no such thing.

“If she'd seen that baby, if she'd seen Braxton put that pill in his mouth, she would have taken him to the doctor, right then,” Browne said.

Robert Miller's attorney says Braxton didn't seem sick when he went to bed that night. He says the Millers are not murderers.

“The evidence will show that this was a tragic accident. The question will be: what will you do with it?” Burt said.

Several of the millers' relatives were at the trial on Monday.

They didn't want to speak on camera, but say Karen and Robert Miller would never intentionally harm their baby.

Testimony is expected to continue Tuesday.

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