Donnisha Hill's father testifies in Damm trial - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Donnisha Hill's father testifies in Damm trial

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GALENA, ILLINOIS (KWWL) -- The trial against David Damm continued Tuesday with prosecution calling witnesses and entering new evidence.  Damm is accused of hiring another man to kill Hill, who was found dead in Illinois in October 2006.

Adonnis Hill, Donnisha Hill's father, took the stand Tuesday.  Donnisha's parents reported her missing to police on three separate occasions, including when Dannisha was found dead in Hanover.  Adonnis Hill testified about the times he saw Donnisha with Damm or near Damm's workplace.

Waterloo police officers and a crime scene investigator testified.  They talked about a napkin with David Damm's semen on it and a tape of Dannisha Hill talking to an investigator after she claimed she was sexually assaulted in mid-October 2006.

Damm's neighbor also testified to seeing Damm near Dannisha in a Waterloo park, but also noted Damm was a good neighbor. 

The woman who found Dannisha's body described the crime scene.

EXTENDED UPDATE

The prosecution continued calling witnesses for questioning Tuesday, including Donnisha Hill's father, Adonnis Hill.

He has spoken out quite emotionally in the past, but on the witness stand he was hunched over and relatively soft spoken, wavering with tears at times, wiping his face with a small white towel. Eyes fixed on the questioning attorney while answering questions, Adonnis Hill recalled the three instances Donnisha was missing in October 2006. Adonnis Hill said he found Dannisha getting out of Damm's van once and near Damm's place of work the second time. The third disappearance, Dannisha was found dead in Hanover.

Several Waterloo Police officers and investigators testified about evidence collection, including a controversial napkin that allegedly contain's Damm's semen. There was controversy over whether the evidence would be allowed in trial. The prosecution and defense both questioned officers about the integrity of how the evidence was handled.

Also on the witness stand, a Waterloo Police sergeant who responded to Allen hospital when Dannisha's mother took her for an examination when Dannisha said she had been sexually assaulted. The prosecution played an audio tape of the interview between Donnisha Hill and and the sergeant. In the tape, Dannisha describes being followed by a white male in his forties. Dannisha said, "I said I'm not talking to you, so he ran up and grabbed me". On the tape, Dannisha said she was sexually assaulted by a stranger. Dannisha's mother testified Dannisha later told her mother it was Damm who had assaulted her.

Darlyne Ballard, the woman who discovered Hill's body in Hanover described Hill's body and the crime scene. During the testimony, attorneys entered crime scene photos as evidence, including several of Hill's body and Hill's synthetic hair piece hanging from a nearby raspberry bush. While the photos were described, Hill's family was visibly shaken and upset, Hill's father eventually rushed out of the courtroom.

Leon Mosley, a Waterloo resident who works in neighborhoods to reduce drug problems in the community and neighbor to Damm, testified as well. Mosley said he saw David Damm sitting in his van at Ferguson Field in Waterloo and noticed a teenage girl he assumed was 18 to 20 years old walking alone in the park and go toward Damm's van. After Dannisha went missing, Mosley said he saw a newspaper photograph of Dannisha and determined the girl in the park that day was Dannisha.

Mosley testified, "When I saw the picture in the Waterloo Courier, that's what made me think, hmn...I've seen that girl before." Mosley also testified that he's known Damm for years describing their relationship as "great, good. We were neighbors. Never had a problem. Never had a problem." Mosley also knows Burt but said he has no knowledge of Damm and Burt knowing each other.

The prosecution will continue calling its witnesses tomorrow. The trial is expected to continue for the next few weeks.

Reporter:  Jamie Grey

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