American Nancy Ann Kissel accused of killing her spouse in Hong Kong confirmed she hit the husband during a fight, but couldn't recall whether it was fatal.
The often tearful testimony of Kissel marked one of the high points of the trial that began two months ago, producing a stream of sensational details about the wealthy couple's deeply troubled marriage.
The prosecution has alleged that Kissel, 41, was having an affair when she mixed her husband, Robert, a milkshake spiked with drugs before bludgeoning him to death with an ornament on Nov. 2, 2003. The Merrill Lynch banker's body was found wrapped in a rug in storage space rented by the couple at their luxury apartment complex.
Kissel, who has pleaded innocent, said Wednesday that she couldn't recall fatally beating her husband on the head.
She has described her 40-year-old husband as an abusive workaholic fueled by alcohol and cocaine.
As her lawyer questioned her, she didn't say whether she drugged the milkshake. She only said that her children helped her prepare the drink, which included bananas, cookies and some red food dye that the kids wanted to add.
She said that after her husband had the drink, he told her, "I have filed for divorce and I'm taking the kids."
Kissel said that her husband held a baseball bat as he spoke because he feared she would get violent. She said she picked up a statue, but dropped it after her husband hit her hand. He then dragged her into the bedroom, threw her on the bed and started to have sex with her.
She said she struggled, reached for the statue again and the two kicked and hit each other with the bat and statue.
"I felt that I hit something, and then I let go, and then I turned around and I saw that his head was bleeding," she said, adding that her husband threatened to kill her and hit her again with the bat.
Kissel said she fell to the floor defending herself with the statue, and she couldn't remember what happened next. She said she didn't recall anything of the immediate aftermath of their fight until January.
The prosecution has said that she rolled the body up in a rug and called maintenance workers to haul it away to the storage locker. The workers complained of a strange fishy smell.
The prosecution also argued that the accused researched medication - including the drug Rohypnol, commonly used in date rapes - on the Internet before she allegedly drugged her husband.
But on Wednesday, Kissel, who sometimes shook as she spoke, told the High Court jury that a physician had prescribed Rohypnol to help her sleep. She said she knew little about the drug and searched the Web to find out more.
"I wanted to know what it was," she said.
Kissel said on Tuesday that she had researched other medication because she was considering suicide with sleeping pills as a way to escape her miserable marriage.
She said Wednesday that months before her husband's death, the couple attended marriage counseling but that it didn't work. When she said she wanted a divorce, the husband said, "Who do you think you are? You'll never divorce me," she testified.
She said that during the counseling sessions, she kept in touch with the lover she met at the couple's vacation house in the northeastern U.S. state of Vermont in the summer of 2003.
"He gave comfort to me on a daily basis," she said about the lover - an electrician who made repairs at the summer house.
If convicted, Kissel faces up to life in prison, the AP reports.
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