State vs Ashley Schwarz: Day Two

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Published: Apr. 26, 2023 at 9:06 PM CDT
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ODESSA, Texas (KOSA) -At 9:30 Tuesday morning, OPD Sgt Sam Chavez made his way to the stand to testify about what had happened on August 29th, 2020.

Chavez testified that the 29th was a hot day, and when he got there 2 hours had passed since a 911 call was made about Jaylin’s well-being.

Sgt Chavez interviewed both Ashley and Daniel Schwarz on the day of Jaylins death and testified about those interviews.

When the state played Chavez’s body cam footage of initial questioning the first thing Daniel Schwarz said was “Are we criminals” to which Chavez responded with no we come out whenever it involves a young child or someone not elderly.

After a few minutes of the initial questions, Sgt Chavez brought Ashley Schwarz into their home because of the extreme heat.

During this line of questions, Ashley explained that their day started like any ordinary day with having breakfast and the kids playing outside. Ashley said Jaylin didn’t want breakfast.

Ashley would go on to say that the younger sister would end up coming inside for water but Jaylin wanted to stay outside to play.

Prosecutors would then start showing pictures to the jury of the house where it was told to the jury that water was offered to Jaylin but no pictures had any water bottles on their property other than the hose being in the backyard next to three dog bowls.

Once Sgt Chavez returned to the front yard with Daniel and Ashley in the video you can see 2 fountain drink cups with a water bottle in the shade.

After the interview, it was discovered that the sisters said they were punished by Ashley and Daniel Schwarz and told to go outside in the heat with no food in their system or water.

The prosecutors would go on to ask questions about couldn’t Jaylin had gotten water from the hose that was outback and since there was no shade outside couldn’t have gone under the trampoline.

Chavez also denied under cross-examination telling Ashley and Daniel Schwarz to skip Jaylin’s funeral on the day of the funeral to come to talk to him. He said the couple told him days before the funeral that they didn’t want to talk to him because they had other things to do. He said he was shocked they didn’t want to hear what he’d learned at the autopsy.

The prosecutors would also go on to ask Sgt Chavez why he felt it was right to call the family on the day of Jaylins funeral and Chavez would say that he had information on Jaylin and the investigation but the Schwarz family didn’t want to speak at that time but would at a later date.

After Sgt Chavez’s testimony under oath, the defense had brought in Dr. Tasha Greenberg, a deputy medical examiner with Tarrant County, who spent two hours on the stand Wednesday in the capital murder trial of Ashley Schwarz, 37.

During Greenberg’s testimony, she stated that Jaylins death was not known right away but did notice after tests her electrolytes were elevated which is a sign of dehydration. She also had the sunken eyes often seen in late-stage dehydration victims.

The defense would go on to ask if it could be possible for a victim to appear fine and then be dead 20 minutes later, Greenberg replied: “They would appear symptomatic at some point.” Greenberg said when she received the Jaylin she noticed there were bruises on her butt that happened before death.

It was at this point the defense would show the jury more photos from the autopsy which were very hard to look at but did show discoloration which according to Greenberg is called a postpartum tan line. The pictures, also showed what appeared to be blisters or peeling skin from a non-expert eye but according to Greenberg, skin falls off under a couple of circumstances. It often happens when the body decomposes or it can also happen when a body is moved or is undressed after death.

The argument that the defense was making also in today’s trial was that Jaylins biological mother was on methamphetamines. Greenberg told the defense she had no knowledge that Jaylin was born with methamphetamine in her system.

She agreed with the defense that exposure to methamphetamine could have an impact on someone physiologically and behaviorally.

Greenberg also agreed exposure to methamphetamine could lead one to ignore what their body is telling them. Greenberg also said in her final remarks that Jaylin did not drink sufficient water on the day she died to survive.