Jurors saw a videotape of a woman squirting hot sauce in the mouth of her adopted son and then making him stand in a cold shower in a case that caused uproar in Alaska after the video aired on the Dr Phil show.
Jessica Beagley is charged with misdemeanor child abuse. Beagley's lawyer said she was punishing the seven-year-old boy from Russia because he misbehaved in school and then lied about it.
Beagley used unusual methods because more traditional forms of punishment had not worked with the boy, attorney William Ingaldson said.
Beagley went on the Dr Phil show to try to get help for herself and the boy, Ingaldson told jurors yesterday. But, prosecutors say, what Beagley did went beyond what would be considered reasonable parental discipline and amounted to child abuse.
She submitted the nine-minute video, made on October 21, 2010, for an episode titled Mommy Confessions. It shows the 36-year-old mother talking forcefully to the boy in a hallway in the family's home.
"Why did you lie to me? Does it work to lie to me?" she asks the child.
Beagley asks the boy what happens when he lies. "I get hot sauce," the crying boy replies.