More children recount abuse, neglect in Trebilcock trial

More children recount abuse, neglect in Trebilcock trial »Play Video

LONGVIEW, Wash. -- The testimony of three children remained consistent Tuesday in the trial of Jeff and Rebecca Trebilcock, the couple accused of nearly starving five adopted children to death.

A 14-year-old boy, whom prosecutors said was near death a year ago, testified Monday. His biological sister testified Tuesday and then later in the afternoon, one of their sisters who was born in Haiti took the stand.

The girl was extremely shy and answered questions with mostly one or two words. The 12-year-old, whose face will not be shown by KATU, said she often wouldn't get to eat if she didn't finish her chores. She said she was also made to stand outside in the cold with no jacket or shoes.

The girl, however, said the treatment by the Trebilcock couple was worse for her 13-year-old adopted brother because the Trebilcocks caught him eating dog food. Prosecutors said he weighed only as much as a six-year-old child when he was rushed to the hospital last year.

"Sometimes he would get spanked ... Sometimes he would get slapped in the face," she said.

The girl is one of three the Trebilcocks adopted from Haiti, along with adopting the boy and his biological sister who were born in America. During testimony from the girl, Jeff Trebilcock got somewhat emotional, wiping away tears from his face.

The three who have testified so far said the Trebilcocks put a motion-sensing alarm in their kitchen to keep the kids from taking more food. The girl testified she still stole bread and foraged in the bathroom for something to eat.

"(I) took toothpaste," she said.

The prosecutor asked her why she did that.

"(Because) I was hungry," she said.

The prosecutor showed a picture of a locked cabinet inside the Trebilcocks' master bedroom. It was stocked with food, including soap and candy bars.