Tiana Martin's Sister Testifies in Murder Trial
March 22, 2006 -- Disturbing testimony Wednesday against Tamara Robinson from the murder victim's sister. It was testimony that brought the sister of Tiana Martin to tears.
The fourteen-year-old told jurors about the abuse Tiana suffered before her death.
Tiana Martin's sister spent much of the afternoon on the witness stand, describing the beating that she says led to the death of her ten-year-old sister inside an apartment in Northwest Fresno.
Tiana Martin's sister, who's now 14, says trouble with their aunt, Tamara Robinson, started one morning in July of 2003, when Robinson ordered Tiana to do push ups and sit ups.
On the stand, her sister said, "Tiana, she just couldn't, but she was trying. My auntie went and got her shower bar ... shower rod. She started hitting Tiana."
The prosecutor asked, "How long did this hitting go on?"
Tiana's sister responded, "About 30 minutes."
Later, he asked, "What was Tiana doing?"
She said, "She just kept on falling and crying and stuff."
Tiana's sister continued, "After my auntie stopped hitting her, she went downstairs, put her hands on the counter and got the meat tenderizer. And she just started hitting Tiana's fingers with it, just constantly hitting them."
The sister says Tamara Robinson told Tiana to take off her clothes and go in the garage, but the beating continued back inside the apartment, upstairs.
Tiana's sister testified, "My auntie told her she had to climb up there like a dog."
The prosecutor asked, "On her hands and knees?"
She answered, "Yes."
He then asked, "Was she naked?"
She said, "Yes. All she had on was her underwear."
Eventually, the girl says her sister, Tiana, was not responding and she says Robinson tried CPR without success.
Tiana's sister then told the court, "My auntie says she thinks she killed my sister."
Tiana's sister also explained how Tiana's body was kept in a sleeping bag inside the apartment for several days before it was dumped.
No body has ever been found.
The defense attorney for Tamara Robinson declined to comment after Wednesday's testimony.
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