US Olympic women‘s volleyball star indicted for murder, child abuse in Puerto Rico Former US Olympic volleyball player Kim Willoughby has been indicted for first-degree murder and child abuse as part of an investigation into the death of a toddler in Puerto Rico, according to reports.
Willoughby, who was part of the US team that won silver at the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008, was indicted over the 2016 death of a three-year-old girl whom she was reportedly seeking to adopt.
The former athlete, 37, had previously argued that the toddler had died in her care after slipping and hitting her head in the shower, according to .
However, prosecutors presented new evidence in the case which is said to suggest that the girl’s injuries were not consistent with the former athlete’s account of events.
An autopsy on the body showed numerous signs of internal and external trauma, according to Hawaiian news outlet the .
Dr. Irma Rivera Diez, who conducted the autopsy, testified that some of the injuries were consistent with the child being struck minutes before death, and that others indicated a longer pattern of abuse.
Willoughby’s defense attorney has argued the girl was subject to abuse prior to being in her care, and claimed that improper first aid could have exacerbated her injuries.
The former Olympian has faced numerous accusations of violent behavior in the past, including over a fight outside a café in 2006 and third-degree assault while a student at the University of Hawaii in 2001.
The start of the trial is scheduled for October 4. If convicted, Willoughby could face up to 99 years in prison, according to reports.