"Lethal household items" ... "unsolved murders" ... "parents murdered by child" -- those were keywords entered in a Google search by a teen accused of beating her mother to death with a hammer.
Heather D'Aoust is being prosecuted as an adult in the fatal bludgeoning of her adoptive mother. The 15-year-old faces murder and assault charges in connection with the death of her adoptive mother, Rebecca D'Aoust, 56, in their Scripps Ranch home last May. D'Aoust was two weeks shy of her 15th birthday on Sunday morning, May 25th, when she and her mother had an argument in the kitchen of their Scripps Ranch home.
Rebecca D'Aoust, a grade school teacher and counselor, died of head injuries in a claw-hammer attack? On Tuesday, her father, James D'Auoust, testified that Heather confessed killing her mother when he came home.
A computer forensics detective testified on Wednesday at the teenager's preliminary hearing. Special Agent Patrick Lim said the Google search led to an Internet Web site called Top 10 Murder Weapons.
Lim said a hammer was No. 6 on the list, which was accessed shortly after 11 p.m. on May 24, about nine hours before the fatal hammer attack. He told the court that Heather shared a common password to the Apple computer with her mother and sister Julie, who is said to have been away at college at the time.
Previous testimony and filings by prosecutors outline a combative relationship between Heather and her parents, and an obsession on her part with killing them.
According to prosecutors, Heather's biological mother was schizophrenic and her father, manic-depressive.
Paul Pfingst, the former district attorney, says his client is mentally ill. She had been cutting herself, a syndrome typical of troubled teeanged girls.
A plea of insanity or "diminished actuality" may be in the offing if Heather is bound over for trial.