Girl's Mother Testifies in Del. Waterboarding Case - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Girl's Mother Testifies in Del. Waterboarding Case

Posted: Updated:
Melvin Morse Melvin Morse

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP/WBOC)- A woman testified Thursday that she didn't believe her longtime companion, who was a pediatrician, was washing her daughter's hair when she saw him hold the girl's head under a kitchen sink faucet.
 
The girl has accused 60-year-old Melvin Morse, of Milton, of waterboarding her. He is on trial in Delaware on endangerment and assault charges.
 
Pauline Morse said on the stand Thursday that she walked into the kitchen one time and surprised Melvin Morse while he had the now 12-year-old girl's head under the faucet. She said Morse jumped and quickly released the girl, who was coughing and shaking.
 
Pauline Morse, 41, also told jurors that she didn't believe he was washing the girl's hair.
 
"He called it washing her hair, but I knew it wasn't washing her hair because there was no soap or anything," Pauline Morse said. She pleaded guilty last year to misdemeanor child endangerment charges and agreed to testify against Melvin Morse.
 
Melvin Morse has authored several books and articles on paranormal science and near-death experiences involving children. He has appeared on shows such as "Larry King Live" and the "The Oprah Winfrey Show" to discuss his research, which also has been featured on an episode of "Unsolved Mysteries" and in an article in "Rolling Stone" magazine.
 
Morse, whose license to practice medicine was suspended after he was charged, has specifically denied police claims that he may have been experimenting on the girl. Waterboarding simulates drowning and has been used in the past by U.S. interrogators on terror suspects. Many critics call it torture.
 
Pauline Morse also testified that Melvin Morse used "hair washing" as a threat or punishment for the girl.
 
"He would just say 'I'm going to wash your hair,' and he would say 'I will do it again.'"
 
Pauline Morse pleaded guilty last year to misdemeanor child endangerment charges and agreed to testify against Melvin Morse. Despite witnessing what happened in the kitchen at least once, as well as various other forms of punishment, including making the girl stand for long periods of time, Pauline Morse said she often did nothing to stop it.
 
"A lot of times I would just go up in my room and ignore the whole thing," she said, adding that she was afraid of "undermining" Melvin Morse.
 
While recounting how she sometimes heard bumping and crying in the mornings which she thought was from Melvin Morse dragging the girl down the stairs, Pauline said she stayed in bed.
 
"I didn't want to see," she explained.
 
The allegations of waterboarding surfaced after Morse was accused of grabbing the girl by the ankle in July 2012 and, as her younger sister watched, dragging her across a gravel driveway. He was arrested and released on bail.
 
When investigators questioned the girl, then 11, she told them about what she called waterboarding, which she said had gone on for years.
 
If convicted on each of four felony counts of reckless endangering, Morse could face up to 20 years in prison, but the presumptive sentence for each count is up to 15 months in prison. He faces up to a year in prison for each of five misdemeanor counts of endangering the welfare of a child, and up to a year on one misdemeanor assault charge.
 
Pauline Morse testified that Melvin Morse had violated a no-contact after his arrest by making calendar entries with messages on his cellphone, which was synched to hers because they shared the same account.
 
One message presented by prosecutors reads: "I have repented and I am suffering my own created hell."
 
Defense attorneys were to begin their cross-examination of Pauline Morse later Thursday.
 
She said her motivations for testifying against Melvin Morse included hoping to be reunited with the girl and her younger sister, who are now in foster care, and because she wanted him "out of our life."
A woman says she did not believe her longtime companion, who was a pediatrician, was washing her daughter's hair when she saw him hold the girl's head under a faucet.

The girl has accused 60-year-old Melvin Morse, of Milton, of waterboarding her. He is on trial in Delaware on endangerment and assault charges.

Pauline Morse testified Thursday that she walked into the kitchen one time and surprised Melvin Morse while he had the now 12-year-old girl's head under the faucet.

She says she did not believe Morse's hair-washing story because she never saw him use soap.

Pauline Morse pleaded guilty last year to misdemeanor endangerment charges and agreed to testify against the doctor.

Melvin Morse, who has researched near-death experiences involving children and has appeared on national TV to share his findings, has denied police claims that he may have been experimenting on the girl.

 

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • No Hope For Crab Picker Visas, Crab Houses

    No Hope For Crab Picker Visas, Crab Houses

    Jun 18, 2018 6:37 PM2018-06-18 22:37:00 GMT
    Monday, June 18 2018 6:37 PM EDT2018-06-18 22:37:09 GMT
    Crab houses in Dorchester County expected to hear whether they would get their visas last Friday, but three of those houses say they haven't heard anything since applying.More
    Crab houses in Dorchester County expected to hear whether they would get their visas last Friday, but three of those houses say they haven't heard anything since applying.More
  • Some Get Outside to Enjoy Day 2 of Possible Heatwave

    Some Folks Enjoying Day 2 of Possible Heatwave

    Jun 18, 2018 6:30 PM2018-06-18 22:30:00 GMT
    Monday, June 18 2018 6:32 PM EDT2018-06-18 22:32:02 GMT
    SALISBURY, Md.- The summer time heat is officially among us, Monday marked day two of a possible heatwave. Some places across the peninsula reached well into the 90 degree mark. But despite the scorching sun, many folks still were determined to get out anMore
    SALISBURY, Md.- The summer time heat is officially among us, Monday marked day two of a possible heatwave. Some places across the peninsula reached well into the 90 degree mark. But despite the scorching sun, many folks still were determined to get out anMore
  • Girls Tech Summer Camp at Salisbury U.

    Girls Tech Summer Camp at Salisbury

    Jun 18, 2018 5:46 PM2018-06-18 21:46:00 GMT
    Monday, June 18 2018 6:23 PM EDT2018-06-18 22:23:41 GMT
    An all-girls summer camp at Salisbury University, during the kick-off of the the Girls Innovation Academy, is hosted by SU's Center for Extended and Lifelong Learning. The six-week camp focuses on innovation, leadership, communication, and technology.More
    An all-girls summer camp at Salisbury University, during the kick-off of the the Girls Innovation Academy, is hosted by SU's Center for Extended and Lifelong Learning. The six-week camp focuses on innovation, leadership, communication, and technology.More
  • Most Popular VideosMost Popular VideosMore>>

  • Watch: Former Cape May Ferry Sunk for Use as Artificial Reef

    Watch: Former Cape May Ferry Sunk for Use as Artificial Reef

    On Friday, a former Cape May-Lewes ferry was sunk to become part of Delaware’s artificial reef system. The Twin Capes joined the Del-Jersey-Land reef’s submerged fleet that includes the ex-destroyer USS Arthur W. Radford, which went down in 2011 as the longest ship reefed on the East Coast, and the Zuni/Tamaroa, a Battle of Iwo Jima survivor turned US Coast Guard cutter that plied Atlantic waters for nearly 50 years.

    More

    On Friday, a former Cape May-Lewes ferry was sunk to become part of Delaware’s artificial reef system. The Twin Capes joined the Del-Jersey-Land reef’s submerged fleet that includes the ex-destroyer USS Arthur W. Radford, which went down in 2011 as the longest ship reefed on the East Coast, and the Zuni/Tamaroa, a Battle of Iwo Jima survivor turned US Coast Guard cutter that plied Atlantic waters for nearly 50 years.

    More
  • Woman Found Dead at Firefly Campground

    Woman Found Dead at Firefly Campground

    The Dover Police Department is investigating after a 20-year-old woman was found dead at the firefly campground. Police say around 6:30 a.m. officers were alerted to an unresponsive woman at Firefly Camping Lot 18. Police say the woman was found unconscious at her campsite and was treated by medical staff before she was transported to Bayhealth Kent General Hospital. There, authorities say she was pronounced dead at 6:55 a.m.

    More

    The Dover Police Department is investigating after a 20-year-old woman was found dead at the firefly campground. Police say around 6:30 a.m. officers were alerted to an unresponsive woman at Firefly Camping Lot 18. Police say the woman was found unconscious at her campsite and was treated by medical staff before she was transported to Bayhealth Kent General Hospital. There, authorities say she was pronounced dead at 6:55 a.m.

    More
  • Salisbury Fire Department Recovers Car in River

    Salisbury Fire Department Recovers Car in River

    The Salisbury Fire Department spent Sunday morning recovering a partially submerged car in the Wicomico River. According to the fire department, firefighters were dispatched to the river near Market Street Inn around 11:30 a.m. Once on scene, officials found a car in the river with a person inside. The fire department described the person in the car as "combative" and required police assistance to remove the person from the car.

    More

    The Salisbury Fire Department spent Sunday morning recovering a partially submerged car in the Wicomico River. According to the fire department, firefighters were dispatched to the river near Market Street Inn around 11:30 a.m. Once on scene, officials found a car in the river with a person inside. The fire department described the person in the car as "combative" and required police assistance to remove the person from the car.

    More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices