A woman on trial for the murder of a two-year-old girl in Cork in 2019 has told the Central Criminal Court that she did not murder the child.
Karen Harrington, with an address at Lakelands Crescent, Mahon in Cork, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Santina Cawley on 5 July 2019, at the apartment where she was living at Elderwood Park on Cork's Boreenmanna Road.
She told the jury of seven men and four women that she could not say who did murder Santina.
She said she was "unsure".
On day 11 of the trial at the Central Criminal Court in Cork, Ms Harrington took the stand at midday, just after prosecuting Senior Counsel Sean Gillane had closed the State's case.
She was asked two questions by her own counsel, Brendan Grehan.
On her response to the charge against her, she said: "I did not murder Santina Cawley."
Mr Grehan asked if that was her position throughout the garda investigation into Santina's death and she replied: "Yes."
Answering Mr Gillane, Ms Harrington said she could not say who did murder Santina.
Mr Gillane asked: "You can't say, or you won't say?"
Ms Harrington replied: "I am unsure to say."
In cross-examination by Mr Gillane, she accepted that Santina's father Michael Cawley had left her apartment, and that after he had left, she was alone with Santina and the child was alive.
Mr Gillane went through some of the injuries Santina had suffered and asked Ms Harrington if she had noticed them. To each one she replied: "No."
Mr Gillane asked how could she not have noticed the injuries.
Ms Harrington replied: "I ask myself the same. All I can recall, back when I vision Santina, I don't see any bruises or injuries or blood or anything."
Mr Gillane said that was because they were not apparent when Mr Cawley had left the apartment.
Mr Gillane put it to Ms Harrington that Santina sustained her injuries when the accused was the only person with her.
Ms Harrington replied: "I disagree with that."
"Are you going to be big enough to accept that Michael Cawley did not do it, that Santina did not do it to herself - do you accept that," Mr Gillane asked.
Ms Harrington replied: "I accept I did not do this to Santina."
Mr Gillane repeated the question in relation to Mr Cawley.
"I do not know what happened between three and five," Ms Harrington replied.
Mr Gillane put it to her that CCTV footage seen by the jury showed Mr Cawley walking around the streets of Cork city at that time.
"It's not for me to answer. I'm not in a position to answer. I don't know," she said.
Mr Gillane asked: "Is that your escape hatch?"
Ms Harrington replied: "I am not escaping anything."
Mr Gillane asked her if she was continuing to maintain the position that she had laid Santina down to sleep, that she had comforted her and had taken off her clothes.
She replied that she was.
Mr Gillane asked Ms Harrington a number of times if she accepted that Mr Cawley, Santina's father, did not inflict the injuries on the child.
To one of those questions, she replied: "It is not for me to answer that. I'm not in a position to answer that. I do not know."
In his closing statement to the jury, Mr Gillane said Ms Harrington was like somebody walking between rain drops, convincing herself she was not getting wet.
He said the raindrops were the evidence in this case and Ms Harrington was drenched in it.
Mr Grehan said Ms Harrington's consistent position was that she did not cause Santina Cawley's injuries.
He suggested it was a case where the jury should be left with a doubt, and he urged the jury members to acquit Ms Harrington.
The trial will resume in the morning, when Mr Justice Michael McGrath will begin his charge to the jury.