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Dozens of photographs showing injuries covering murder suspect Esar Met's body the day after his arrest as a suspect in the slaying of 7-year-old neighbor Hser Ner Moo are among the evidence gathered to build a case against the 21-year-old Burmese refugee.
The injuries could be the result of second-grader Hser Ner Moo's efforts to fight off her attacker, according to the search warrants made public in 3rd District Court this week.
The nearly 100 pages of search warrants detail evidence seized that connects Esar Met to the girl's murder inside his South Salt Lake apartment last month.
Photographs ordered of the suspect's skin reveal abrasions on his shoulder, chest, back and legs, according to the search warrants. The man had redness around his navel and a circular abrasion on his hip, the documents state.
FBI agents found the body of Hser Ner Moo in Esar Met's basement shower on April 1. She was found beaten, raped and strangled a day after she walked away from her home at South Parc Townhomes, 2250 S. 500 East, in South Salt Lake. The girl's autopsy revealed she was clutching hair in her right hand that resembled that of Esar Met's. The girl was beaten about the head, neck and torso with some injuries consistent with strangulation or suffocation, according to court documents.
Esar Met's blood was on the floor of a room adjacent to the shower and spattered on one wall, according to the charging documents. He is charged with aggravated murder and kidnapping.
Police recovered several items belonging to Hser Ner Moo in Esar Met's apartment, including the girl's pink shoes, a plastic red ribbon and the child's underwear, the search warrants state.
Police also seized a ring from Esar Met that could be the object responsible for a laceration found above Hser Ner Moo's left eyebrow, according to the documents. The girl's autopsy states the eye injury is consistent with a blunt force injury - possibly by being hit by someone wearing a ring.
A bus pass found on the man when he was arrested at his aunt's Cottonwood Heights apartment on April 1 could show specific times Esar Met left and arrived at his South Salt Lake apartment the day of Hser Ner Moo's murder, according to the search warrants. A Social Security card and notebook were other items with the man at his arrest.
Esar Met is being held in the Salt Lake County jail. The murder charge against him is punishable by death, but prosecutors have said they will wait until after a four-day preliminary hearing scheduled for Dec. 9 before deciding whether to pursue the death penalty.