TAMPA (FOX 13) - It's was a smile that would warm up any heart, but Elizabeth Norwood only got to see her daughter Zaylah smile for eight short months.
"She was always smiling. She was like the perfect baby that anybody would want," recalled Norwood.
Jermaine McKinnley is accused in the girl’s death. The two were dating at the time and Norwood says she left Zaylah in his care.
"I feel guilty because I trusted somebody around my kids and now I can't get my daughter back,” continued Norwood. “I feel guilty because I trusted him."
Court records show McKinnley called 911 claiming the baby was choking. Instead, doctors found bruises and severe head injuries.
Baby Zaylah did not survive her injuries. McKinnley was charged with her murder.
Now, McKinnley wants to take legal matters into his own hands, handwriting motion after motion in his case. He says the judge is biased, the prosecutor is biased and he wants them removed.
He also wants to case dismissed, claiming he didn't kill baby Zahlah. Instead, he points the finger at her 2-year-old little sister, claiming the toddler was jealous and was striking the baby in the head with her elbow, covering her face with pillows, and pushing her off the bed.
McKinnley says he's "completely innocent," but his public defender was pretty much ignoring his claims in court. After trying to get the judge’s attention in court, he was escorted out.
As for Norwood, she's left with only videos of her sweet girl and, she says, a lifetime of regret. "It's not fair. Her life; he's lucky that all he gets to do is go to jail. She's gone."