Daughter of alleged child killer testifies
November 19, 2009
Ulysses Roberson’s estranged daughter offered testimony at trial on Thursday that could contradict on the prosecution’s timeline of events in the alleged murder of Alexander Olive.
Roberson is accused of killing Olive, his 4-year-old son, in a Tahoe Keys home in late 1985, or early 1986.
Lisa Roberson-Terry testified she believed she saw Olive at a gathering of the Roberson family in Bakersfield about five months after the birth of her eldest son, who was born in August 1985.
But Roberson-Terry said the gathering could have taken place anywhere from three to six months after her son’s birth.
“I’m guessing,” Roberson-Terry said about her statement that the meeting was about five months after the birth.
Although the defense has offered several witnesses who said they believed they saw Olive alive since he was allegedly killed based on a segment of the television show “Unsolved Mysteries,” Roberson-Terry is the first person who knew Olive to say she may have saw the child alive after January 1986.
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Roberson-Terry, who became choked up at one point after defense attorney Monica Lynch asked a question about Olive, also testified regarding the alleged domestic abuse in the Roberson household.
She sad that Roberson slapped her once when she was 12 or 13, and broke her eardrum. She said that was the only time she was hit by her father.
“My feelings were more hurt than my ear drum,” Roberson-Terry said.
Roberson-Terry testified she never saw Roberson hit or shake his first wife, Raj Roberson. She said she had only seen Raj Roberson cry twice because her feelings had been hurt by Ulysses Roberson.
Roberson-Terry also said she never saw Ulysses Roberson strike his oldest son, Urenauld Roberson, although she said she knew her father had spanked Urenauld when the family was living in Texas.
Urenauld, who now goes by the name Renauld Jones, testified earlier in the trial about a severe beating he received at the hands of both his parents, but primarily Ulysses Roberson.
Defense attorney Monica Lynch has sought to convince the jury that Raj Roberson was an equally controlling head of the Roberson clan, which also included several women and the children they bore with Ulysses Roberson.
But Raj Roberson was just one of many women in Ulysses Roberson’s life who succumbed to the self-proclaimed doctor’s charisma, which inevitably transformed from endearing to controlling, according to the prosecution.
Roberson-Terry said she felt that both Raj and Ulysses Roberson were in charge of the family, but conceded under cross-examination that household dynamics are often a mystery in the eyes of a child.
“As a child it’s a little difficult to know who’s in control,” Roberson-Terry said.
The trial resumes Monday morning.