Opening statements heard in elevator stabbing trial

Posted: Updated:
BROOKLYN -

Opening statements were delivered Wednesday in the trial of a man accused of stabbing two Brooklyn children in an elevator.

Daniel St. Hubert is charged with murder, attempted murder and assault in the June 1, 2014 attack in East New York. He allegedly stabbed 6-year-old PJ Avitto 11 times, killing him. Mikayla Capers, who was 7 years old at the time, was stabbed more than a dozen times but survived.

The prosecution says DNA evidence, surveillance footage and witnesses, including now-11-year-old Capers, prove that St. Hubert is the one who used a steak knife to stab the children. But the defendant's attorney, Howard Green, called for a mistrial, saying the prosecutor's statement was a disgrace. The judge denied that request.

Green then continued, calling DNA evidence "junk science," claiming witnesses were coerced and saying that Capers has a history of lying.

St. Hubert was seen smiling and laughing at points during the proceedings. The families of both victims were in attendance.

Cameras were only allowed inside the courtroom for opening statements. Jurors also heard from Avitto's mother. Others will take the stand Thursday, including some of the investigating officers. It's unclear when Capers will testify.

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