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Doctor Testifies In Trial Of Yonkers Man Charged With Attempted Murder

YONKERS, N.Y. – A Yonkers woman had her face beaten so severally she needed reconstructive surgery and several stitches to repair the damage, a Westchester Medical Center trauma doctor testified Monday.

Prosecutors said 59-year-old Julia Winters suffered the blows at the hands of her son, Albert Crooks, who in a September 2011 fit of rage hit his mother repeatedly, first with a glass ashtray and later with his firsts.

Crooks has denied the charges but Raj Murali, the doctor who oversaw Winters’ stay in the trauma unit, said whoever it was who attacked the woman caused serious injuries to her face.

“There were lacerations, swelling and facial fractures,” he said. “There was a fracture on the floor of the orbital bone. It would have been very painful.”

Monday was the second day of trial for Crooks who faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted on charges of attempted murder, first-degree assault and criminal possession of a weapon.

Prosecutors said just after 1 a.m. on Sept. 23, Crooks, 31, and his mother were arguing inside her St. Casimir Avenue apartment. Crooks snapped, they said, and hit his mother with a heavy glass ashtray, then his fists and finally with a wooden table leg.

Yonkers police found Winters outside a neighbors' door before rushing her to the emergency room. Crooks was arrested roughly three weeks later and charged in connection with the incident. He has been held at the Westchester County Jail on $100,000 bail since his arrest.

Last week, in the first day of the trial, Winters took the stand to testify against her son in what court room attendees said was an emotional recollection of the events.

On Monday, however, defense lawyer Brendan O’Meara said Crooks was not responsible for the incident.

He said Winters was on a dangerous combination of alcohol and benzodiazepine, a sedative prescription pill, at the time, which led to her loss of memory and confusion surrounding the incident.

He also pointed to hospital records that said Winters told staff she did not remember the attack.

The prosecution is expected to wrap up its case early this week before the defense will call its witnesses. The trial is expected to reach its end this week.

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