Two young children have testified against their mother who is accused of murdering their father.
“How do you feel about your mother now?” the nine- year-old girl was asked about her mom, Julie Harper, in a San Diego court.
“I don't like her,” said the girl.
When asked why, the girl replied: “Because she killed my father.”
Her older brother also testified against his mother. The boy was so distraught about taking the stand that the court provided a support dog to help comfort him.
To protect their identities, IE isn't showing their faces or naming them, but the raw emotion was clear in their voices as their mother stood trial for shooting their father.
The children recounted what they heard the day their dad was slain.
The daughter testified: “We heard a big thud. She said, ‘Daddy just fell of the chair.’ We said, ‘Can we see him?’ and she said ‘No.’”
Harper has pleaded not guilty to murder. She has admitted to shooting her husband - a high school math teacher - but said it was in self-defense after years of verbal and sexual abuse.
“He started lighting into me about how disgustingly fat I was,” said Harper.
Cellphone video played in court captured her furious husband Jason yelling at her for wasting money.
“I don't care, but don't force me into going somewhere until you give me my $3,000,” he’s heard saying. “I don't want to enable your horrible money waste and your poor credit score and everything else!”
The mom also claimed he raped her 30 times during their troubled marriage. She said she shot him because she feared he would rape her again or kill her.
But prosecutors showed photos taken the day of her arrest in just her underwear - revealing no obvious injuries.
They are portraying her as a cold and calculating woman. Right after the shooting, she took her children out for pastries. She also had a getaway bag stuffed with a gun and passports.
Reporter Marcella Lee, who’s covering the trial for KFMB TV, told IE that when the little boy took the stand, “he immediately got emotional and broke down, and it was so hard to watch. He was so vulnerable.”
Of the nine-year-old girl, she said: “Her face turned a bit red and you could see she was uncomfortable.”
The children are now living with their paternal grandparents.
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