The witness at the centre of testimony in a child abuse case against her Calgary aunt and uncle, who are also her adopted parents, denied Thursday that she exaggerated the allegations of abuse she and her siblings endured.
The girl, now 19, alleges her aunt and uncle abused her and her two younger siblings in 2010 and 2011. The three children were adopted by the couple after their parents were killed in a car crash in 2006.
There is a publication ban in place to protect the identities of the children involved.
The eldest child has testified about sustaining a wide range of abuses at the hands of her adopted parents, including being forced to wear a soiled adult diaper and drink her own vomit.
WATCH: ‘She told me I had to’: Girl alleges aunt forced her to drink vomit – Reid Fiest reports
On Thursday, she told the court she witnessed her aunt put her brother’s head under water in the kitchen sink.
Throughout the trial this week, the defence has maintained the girl made up the allegations of abuse against her adoptive parents and manipulated her siblings to go along with her stories.
The children were removed from the home in 2011; a teacher alerted authorities to possible abuse after finding marks on the youngest girl’s body.
While on the stand, the 19-year-old told the court she experimented with alcohol after being taken from her adoptive home, and she admitted to showing up at school while drunk.
She also said she had cut off all ties with her biological family, but denied she told her younger siblings to stop visiting their aunt and uncle.
WATCH: Aunt and uncle on trial for abuse of children whose parents died in 2006 car crash – Tracy Nagai reports
The young woman added that her new home, where she now lives, is less strict and similar to the living environment when she lived with her biological parents.
Interview with middle child played for court
A 2011 police interview with the middle child, who is now 14, was also played in court on Thursday. In it, she details other abuses she and her siblings endured, including being forced to take cold showers when they didn’t complete their chores or were “bad.”
“They did bad things,” the girl — who was eight at the time — said in the interview.
The girl said she and her siblings referred to their aunt and uncle as “mom” and “dad.”
She also described instances where a belt was used as a form of discipline and her aunt sticking needles into her tongue.
“Then she um, puts um, mostly all of them in my mouth, in my tongue.”
The girl also told the officer in the interview that her aunt would hit her brother in the nose until it bled, then he would be made to clean it up.
The girl outlined for the officer how her aunt would hit them on the hands with wooden spoons.
“When I don’t know something, she hits me,” she said. “She hits me with a wooden spoon.”
The judge still needs to decide what evidence will be considered, as much of the testimony is being given in a voir dire.
More testimony from the girl, and the teacher who first noticed signs of abuse, is expected Friday.