DALLAS - A Dallas County judge has denied Wesley Mathews’ request for a new trial related to the death of his adopted daughter.
Mathews is serving a life sentence with the possibility of parole. He pleaded guilty in June to a reduced charge of injury to a child by omission.
The Richardson father was accused of killing his 3-year-old adopted daughter, Sherin, in 2017. But he claims she died after choking on milk.
Mathews admitted to putting her body in a culvert near the family’s home.
His defense attorney filed a motion for a new trial, claiming he did not get a fair trial when jurors were shown photos of his daughter’s remains. The autopsy photos went too far, his lawyer argued.
"I think he truly regrets the decisions he made that fateful day," said Rafael de la Garza, Mathews' attorney. "Knowing him almost since day one, he's really a good human being who made a terrible mistake that is going to haunt him for the rest of his life. And I know he's troubled by that."
Prosecutors said the judge allowed them to use 35 specific photos in the punishment phase.
"Essentially, this is the crime he committed. We introduced limited photos for the purpose of showing the jury exactly the condition of Sherin's body and exactly the crime he committed," said Jason Fine, the lead prosecutor.
Mathews' attorney will now continue the appeal process.