UPDATE: 2:41 p.m.
The jury has begun deliberating punishment for 32-year-old Samson Loynachan, convicted of murder in the death of his fiance's 2-year-old daughter.
Defense attorney Fred Cummings asked the jury for mercy, saying a punishment less than a life sentence would be appropriate.
"He's been a responsible citizen up to this point in his life," Cummings said during closing arguments, pointing out Loynachan's service in the U.S. Navy that included a stint in Iraq, where he injured his back.
"This is not a way to value Chloe's life. You cannot place a value on Chloe's life."
But prosecutor Eric Nickols, who tried the case with Alana Minton, urged jurors to do just that by giving him a life sentence.
"Give him life. Send a message," Nickols said. "He picks on things that are weaker than he is. He's angry, he's violent, he's a liar. He's a murderer."
Loynachan faces punishment ranging from 5 years to life in prison or 99 years. He is not eligible for probation.
Visiting Judge Phillip Vick is overseeing the case in the 213th state district court.
UPDATE: 2:10 p.m.
Convicted child killer Samson Loynachan told jurors of happier times with his two children, with photos of them visiting state parks, walking along a river, reading books.
Loynachan, who could face up to life in prison in the death of his 2-year-old stepdaughter, Chloe Robinson, said he spent as much time with his kids as he could after he and their mother were divorced. He said the kids came first.
"No matter how bad things were between us .... we were able to set that aside for the children," he said under questioning from defense attorney Fred Cummings.
He was living with Chloe's mother, Nicole Robinson, at the time of the child's death.
But Loynachan faced sharp questioning from prosecutor Alana Minton, who grilled him about what happened to little Chloe on the day she was injured. Loynachan said he hit her with a vehicle arm rest while trying to cheer up the sick child; experts have said that the arm rest would not have caused the damage she sustained.
"Why did you hit her?" Minton asked.
"I was playing around," Loynachan testified.
"What did she do to deserve to be hit?" Minton asked.
"She didn't do anything," he said.
Closing arguments are expected to begin about 2:20 p.m. before Visiting Judge Phillip Vick. Loynachan is facing up to life in prison and is not eligible for probation.
Minton and prosecutor Eric Nickols had originally sought a life sentence for Loynachan.
UPDATE: 1:30 p.m.
Convicted child killer Samson Loynachan has taken the witness stand again in his own defense as the jury considers whether to sentence him to up to life in prison for the death of his 2-year-old stepdaughter.
UPDATE: 11:30 a.m.
The state rested its case against convicted murderer Samson Loynachan with witnesses testifying he was overly harsh with his son, caused bruises on his then-wife during an argument and was mean to the family dogs.
His ex-wife, Kelly McArthur, testified that he never struck her but did leave bruises on her arm after an argument escalated into "wrestling." Her brother-in-law, who is a Friendswood police officer, said he saw the bruises and urged her to file a police report. She never did.
Loynachan was convicted of murder in the death of his 2-year-old stepdaughter, Chloe Robinson, who died in August 2010 of a severe blow to the head.
Prosecutors Alana Minton and Eric Nickols presented evidence that the injury occurred while she was under the care of Loynachan. Chloe's mother, Nicole Robinson, had started a new job and could not pick up the child when daycare called to say she was sick.
Defense attorney Fred Cummings presented witnesses during the punishment phase of the trial that Loynachan was a family man who appeared to enjoy his combined family.
Testimony is continuing before Visiting Judge Phillip Vick.
Testimony has begun in the punishment phase for convicted murderer Samson Loynachan with his ex-wife testifying that he was occasionally too harsh with his son and was mean to the family dog.
Loynachan was convicted Friday of murder in the death of his 2-year-old stepdaughter, Chloe Robinson, who died from a severe blow to the head.
Loynachan testified in his own defense that he did not intentially harm Chloe. He suggested that the injury may have occurred when he struck the child with the arm rest of a vehicle, but expert witnesses told jurors that would not have caused the severe injury.
Visiting Judge Phllip Vick is overseeing the case.