TIME Crime

Mother of Boy Killed in Hot-Car Incident Says Ex ‘Destroyed My Life’

Leanna Taylor cries as an attorney shows photographs of her son Cooper to the jury during a murder trial for her ex-husband Justin Ross Harris, on Oct. 31, 2016, in Brunswick, Ga.
John Bazemore—AP Leanna Taylor cries as an attorney shows photographs of her son Cooper to the jury during a murder trial for her ex-husband Justin Ross Harris, on Oct. 31, 2016, in Brunswick, Ga.

While Leanna Taylor believes that her ex-husband was a devoted father, she said his cheating "humiliated" her

The mother of a boy who died in a hot-car incident said in court Tuesday that the boy’s father, her ex-husband, “destroyed my life.”

Justin Ross Harris left his 22-month-old son Cooper in the car in Georgia in June 2014; his defense attorneys say he forgot to drop him off at daycare and then forgot that he was in the car, while prosecutors say he deliberately left the child in the car to escape his family responsibilities. He was found to have been sexting with a 17-year-old during the incident, asking her to send a photo of her breasts. He also visited a prostitute not long before the event.

Leanna Taylor divorced Harris earlier this year, but she testified in court Monday that he was a loving father who “wanted to enjoy every second he could” with their son. She said she did not believe he would leave the child intentionally. But on Tuesday, questioned by prosecutors, she said her husband’s infidelity had “humiliated” her.

“He ruined my life. He destroyed my life,” she said, according to the Associated Press. “I may never trust anyone again the way that I did. If I never see him again in my life, that’s fine.”

Testimony from Taylor’s best friend and Harris’ brother also emphasized that cheating aside, they believed him to be a devoted father and did not feel he would purposefully kill his son.

[AP]

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