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Attorney: Day care fire an accident, not murder

HOUSTON (AP) — An attorney for a woman who is on trial after four children died in a fire at her Houston home day care says the blaze was a deadly accident, not an act of murder.

Closing arguments began Monday in the trial of Jessica Tata (TAH’-tah) on one of four counts of felony murder.

Prosecutors say Tata left the children home alone and with oil cooking on a stove burner while she went out to the store. Three children were also hurt in the blaze.

Defense attorney Mike DeGeurin argued that Tata should never have left the children, but that the fire could have been sparked by a malfunctioning refrigerator.

He says testimony that Tata remembered at the store that the stove was on could have been faulty memory.

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