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A Florida woman on trial for the murder of her husband and stepfather in January 2019 testified on Tuesday that she stabbed her husband in self-defense because she feared for her life.
“He was suffocating me. I couldn’t breathe and he had me pinned down,” Danielle Redlick, 48, told the court, according to WESH-TV. “I was scared — I was in fear for my life. I thought he had snapped, and I could die. “
“Why did you think that you could die?” Assistant Public Defender Andrew Parnell asked his client, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
“Just how he had me pinned down and I couldn’t breathe,” Redlick said. “Just the look in his eyes — the anger.”
She’s charged with second degree murder and tampering with evidence in the murder of Michael Redlick, 65. He had been the director of external affairs and partnership relations at the University of Central Florida’s DeVos Sport Business Management Graduate Program.
As previously reported by Oxygen.com, prosecutors described the crime scene as a “horror movie” and allege that Danielle Redlick attempted to poorly clean up the crime scene and checked her online dating profile before reporting her husband's death to the police.
Danielle Redlick, taking the stand in her own defense, told jurors that Michael Redlick was frequently abusive during their four-year courtship and 15-year-marriage — usually when he was angry about work or drunk, the station reported.
“At this point, he raised his fists and he just crossed me in the face," she testified about one incident. "And I felt like he had taken every frustration he had that week on me.”
When Parnell asked why she didn’t leave she explained: “Well, there was still a lot of good.”
The couple’s now-18-year-old daughter, Jadyn Redlick, had taken the stand for the prosecution on Monday and said that her parents were having problems before her father’s death.
Jadyn testified that her father moved out of the family home in April 2018, but moved back six months later according to ClickOrlando.com, after being upset that the family wasn’t living together,
“I remember certain times where he would come by and bring her flowers and little gifts while they weren’t living together,” Jadyn Redlick said, according to the outlet. She thought that her parents were getting along better until the night before his death, when she witnessed them arguing before leaving the house.
Jadyn said her mother warned her that there might be arguing that night.
“My mother told me — I believe it was the day before he passed away — that she and my dad had been arguing that he found a message on her phone from another man and that things might be off when he gets home from work,” she said.
Danielle Redlick, Oxygen.com previously reported, had created a profile on and been using a dating app shortly before her husband died.
Jaclyn described her father as “distant” and “not super talkative” that night before her parents started arguing.
“At one point they were arguing, and I got in-between them ... and I grabbed the bottle of liquor he was drinking and threw it in the dumpster outside,” Jadyn said according to ClickOrlando.com.
She said she spent that night at a friend’s house, and her father apologized on Jan. 11 to her for his behavior the night before. He died later that evening.
Jurors also heard a recording of a jail telephone call between mother and daughter, during which Jaclyn told her mother that she was angry and accused her mother of lying about how her father died.
“What am I supposed to do mom?” Jadyn said according to the Orlando Sentinel. “I don’t know the real story.”
On the phone, Redlick explained that she couldn’t tell her daughter everything because “I knew there was going to be possible charges pressed against me.”
Previous testimony in the case from first responders indicated that Danielle Redlick had repeatedly told people that Michael Redlick had stabbed himself in the argument — and that, despite the defendant's claims that she was in danger that evening, no one witnessed bruises on her in the hours after Michael Redlick's body was discovered.
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