Ex-ACS worker: Nixzmary wasn't in imminent danger

BROOKLYN - A former Administration for Children?s Services worker testified Monday as the trial for Nixzmary Brown?s mother winds down.

Vanessa Rhoden says she did not believe Nixzmary or her siblings were in imminent danger a month before the child was found murdered in her Bed-Stuy home. Rhoden testified she and her fellow ACS worker investigating allegations of abuse found the children well-dressed and clean.

Defense attorneys believe Rhoden?s testimony shows Nixzaliz Santiago is not responsible in her daughter?s death.

Prosecutors did not comment after the testimony, but pointed out in court that each ACS worker involved with the case was either suspended or fired after Nixzmary?s death.

Investigators say the child was tied up and forced to use a litter box as a bathroom before her stepfather, Cesar Rodriguez, beat her to death. Rodriguez was convicted of manslaughter in March. Santiago, who is on trial for murder, is accused of not getting help for her daughter.

Defense attorneys say they will call their final witness, their own medical examiner, Tuesday. Closing arguments are expected next Tuesday. If convicted, Santiago faces 25 years to life in prison.

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