Harmony Montgomery’s father Adam has attempted to pin the boy’s death on his ex-wife in an explosive start to his murder trial.
In opening statements at the start of his trial Thursday in New Hampshire, his attorney said his ex-wife Kayla “only knows how Harmony died,” but said Montgomery admitted to helping cover up and dispose of her body.
Montgomery, 33, already serving 30 years in prison for separate firearms offenses, faces murder and assault charges but pleaded guilty to charges of tampering with physical evidence and abuse of a corpse the day before.
Prosecutors allege he fatally struck his half-blind daughter with a “closed fist” in December 2019 after she had a bathroom accident in a car he and Kayla lived in, after they were evicted.
“Kayla was an equal participant in the cover-up,” Montgomery’s attorney, Jamie Brooks, told the jury.
Adam Montgomery stuck out his tongue and smiled as his murder trial began with jury selection Tuesday. He maintains that he did not kill the five-year-old girl, but admitted to covering up her death and helping to dispose of her body.
Prosecutors claim Adam beat Harmony to death after she had an accident in the bathroom in a car they were living in after her eviction.
On Thursday, Adam Montgomery’s defense argued that his ex-wife Kayla (pictured) was responsible for Harmony’s death. He is expected to be a key prosecution witness.
Brooks added that “Adam is not innocent,” but insisted there was more to the story.
‘He and Kayla covered up Harmony’s death. “He’s not an innocent here,” Brooks continued.
‘He and Kayla moved Harmony’s body from one location to another to keep it hidden. And Adam is no innocent here. He and Kayla put her body in a shower to wash her remains of decomposition fluids and then hid her remains permanently. You can and should find him guilty of those crimes.
Kayla, who is currently behind bars following an 18-month sentence for perjury offences, is expected to be a key witness for the prosecution, likely fueling Montgomery’s initial statement blaming her for the death.
Authorities only became aware of Harmony’s disappearance in November 2021 after her mother reported that she had not seen her in two years, and Kayla was also later arrested after she allegedly collected food stamps in the girl’s name. missing
She has said she is cooperating fully with prosecutors and is expected to testify against her ex-husband, however, Brooks claimed her testimony may be designed to reduce her own legal jeopardy rather than the truth.
“Kayla was willing to sing during her dinner,” Brooks argued. ‘Not for the truth. Not for harmony. But for Kayla. Kayla was concerned about protecting herself and freeing herself from responsibility for her own behavior.
Harmony disappeared in December 2019, however authorities did not become aware of her disappearance until November 2021.
Kayla Montgomery will appear in Hillsborough Superior Court in May 2022, following her arrest for perjury after lying about the last time she saw Harmony alive.
Prosecutors described the ex-wife as a battered and bruised victim of domestic abuse who went along with Adam’s alleged crimes out of fear.
To counter this, the defense also brought up a note allegedly written by Kayla after her arrest, where Brooks said she wrote “about her willingness to, quote, ‘betray Adam,’ to not finally be free of Adam, to not finally be free from Adam.” Safe from him, if not to tell the truth.
‘Betray. Meaning: stab him in the back. But she also wrote about her desire to be alone with him once again,” she said.
‘For kissing. Make love if I could. She did not write about the fear of being alone with him. She did not write about any fear that Adam would hurt or kill her because of her betrayal. In her reflections on the fairy tale, Adam would understand her and protect her until the end. Her children needed her mother.
His perjury crime came when he lied about working a shift at Dunkin’ Donuts the day he said he last saw Harmony alive, it reports. Law and crime.
But she was caught in the lie after investigators examined her employment records and she pleaded guilty to perjury in exchange for a plea deal, which included testifying against Adam.
Brooks argued that this was evidence that she is a proven liar, adding: “It was explained to Kayla that she could choose not to answer a question if it would incriminate her… However, instead, she decided to lie.” Under oath. The same oath you’ll see her make later.
Prosecutors have argued that the lies were actually evidence of witness tampering, one of the remaining charges Adam still faces.
The state’s argument that the father beat his daughter to death in a Burger King parking lot also came under fire in the opening statement, as Brooks countered that Harmony actually died days earlier.
Adam and Kayla (pictured together) were living with Harmony in a car after her eviction after Thanksgiving 2019, shortly before Adam allegedly killed his daughter.
The convict appeared unconcerned and paced around the courtroom without handcuffs as he faces murder charges in the disappearance of his five-year-old daughter Harmony.
Crystal Sorey (right), Harmony’s biological mother, lost custody of the young woman in 2018 due to her drug addiction. She reported her missing two years after Harmony was last seen alive.
He claimed he returned from work one night to find “Harmony’s cold, lifeless body” behind the apartment complex where they had been parked since her eviction, but Adam “supported” his wife when she made the gruesome discovery.
“Kayla made Adam feel responsible,” Brooks said.
‘She claimed not to know what happened. It was Adam’s fault for everything they were going through. It wasn’t her fault, she insisted. She thought all the children were asleep. She had to protect her. She had to protect her children. If anyone found out, they would take her children away.’
Adam is accused of systematically moving Harmony’s body around various locations to evade police detection, including a dishwasher and a friend’s apartment.
In the state’s opening remarks, they offered gruesome details about the couple’s alleged actions, including how Harmony ended up being “the dead girl rotting on the roof.”
Brooks continued, “(Kayla) knew the police thought they had information about what happened to Harmony…And she knew the walls were closing in. Kayla also knew that pointing the finger at Adam was worth it.”
“Is the witness tapping into a well of true memories?” He concluded. —Or just make it up?