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Weber County jury: Millerberg guilty of child-abuse homicide

Eric Millerberg found guilty of child-abuse homicide in Alexis Rasmussen’s death.



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"There’s only one person on trial today," he told the jury. "You are only here to decide the guilt of one person and that’s the defendant. Somebody else on another day will decide Dea’s guilt. That’s not your job."

The defense did not put any witnesses on the stand during the trial, and Eric Millerberg did not testify in his own defense.

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Alexis was missing for 38 days before Eric Millerberg’s friend, Eric "Peanut" Smith, broke the case for police. He testified that he helped Eric Millerberg move the body on Sept. 12, 2011 — a day after the Millerbergs dumped Alexis’ body in a heavily wooded area near Taggart.

Eric Smith, handcuffed and in a jail jumpsuit, led police back to the girl’s badly decomposed body in October 2011.

The girl was found with her legs folded against her in a fetal position, her lower half stuffed into a garbage bag.

Utah assistant medical examiner Joseph White testified on Friday that the girl’s body was so badly decomposed, it was difficult to identify her. Dental records and a fingerprint analysis finally led to a positive identification.

Because Alexis’ body was exposed to the elements and animals, White said it was also difficult to examine whether the girl’s body had any evidence of trauma.

While toxicology tests determined the teen’s body tissue contained lethal amounts of methamphetamine, White said he was unable to determine a cause and manner of death.

Toxicologist Douglas Rollins testified that after looking at the girl’s toxicology report, he believed Alexis consumed meth less than 24 hours before she died.

"I am of the opinion that it was probably ingested within hours of her death," he said.


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Dea Millerberg, 40, is charged with desecration of a human body related to the girl’s death. Her trial is scheduled for April. She was granted "use immunity" in her husband’s trial, meaning her testimony can’t be used against her in her case.

Charges were never filed against Smith, as he had made a deal with police that if he led them to the girl’s body, he would not be charged.

jmiller@sltrib.com

Twitter: @jm_miller



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