Trial begins for man charged with stabbing 2 kids, 1 fatally, in Brooklyn elevator

DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN (WABC) -- Opening statements began Wednesday in the case of a man charged with stabbing two children, one fatally, in a Brooklyn elevator in June 2014.

Mikayla Capers, who was 7-years-old at the time, was with 6-year-old friend PJ Avitto in the elevator at the Boulevard House in East New York when Daniel St Hubert allegedly pulled out a knife and stabbed PJ 11 times, killing him.

Mikayla was stabbed 16 times but survived.

"She calls him the bad man and I ask her where is PJ and she says he's right here by me," said her great-grandmother, Regenia Trevathan.

On day one of his trial St Hubert listened as the prosecution pointed out the suspect's DNA was found on the bloody knife, something the defense called "junk science".

Defense attorney Howard Greenberg called his client a "sitting duck", insisting he had nothing to do with the crime.

Then Greenberg zeroed in on the victims' families, criticizing them for leaving the kids alone in the elevator, something they say isn't true.

"They did a pathetic job looking out, they are so desperate for closure that they put upon the then 7-year-old to do their handy work," said Greenberg.

He was talking about Mikayla, accusing her relatives of coaching her in some of her testimony. The city already settled a civil suit with her family.

"What's she lying about?, lying about being in an elevator, being hacked and slashed by a large black man..seeing her playmate die besides her?," said Brooklyn Assistant District Attorney Patrick O'Connor.

O'Connor's opening statement was so passionate, Greenberg asked the judge for a mistrial, calling O'Connor's behavior "disgraceful".

"After listening to that you need a hug," he said, giving St Hubert a hug and kiss on the head. The suspect was not amused.

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