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Calif. woman goes on trial in severed penis case

Published On: Apr 17 2013 03:28:06 PM CDT
National News
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) -

A Southern California prosecutor says a jealous wife yelled "You deserve it" before severing her estranged husband's penis with a 10-inch kitchen knife and throwing it in a garbage disposal.
    
A jury heard opening statements Wednesday in the case of 50-year-old Catherine Kieu, who is accused of drugging her husband's tofu with sleeping pills and tying him to a bed before the attack.
    
Deputy District Attorney John Christl said audio of the July 11, 2011, incident was captured by a voice-activated recorder Kieu had hidden in the bedroom.
    
Deputy Public Defender Frank Bittar said Kieu's severely traumatic childhood in war-torn Vietnam, including rape by her older brother, caused mental illness that bars her from a mayhem or torture conviction.