Hayward -- A fast-talking Hans Reiser agreed to pass on his company and other intellectual assets to his two children on Monday in the wrongful-death lawsuit that they brought against him for the loss of their mother.
During his hourlong closing argument, Reiser wanted to be able to connect with Rory and Niorline Reiser by passing on what remains of the software development company that he ran before murdering his wife, Nina Reiser, in 2006.
"Part of what I'm doing here is trying to do a little repair to my soul," Reiser said. "It hurt to hold on to some integrity for my children."
Reiser, who has been calling himself an "indigent prisoner," asked the jury to also consider passing on possible business ventures to his children instead of awarding them money in the suit.
He choked up when he asked the jury to be allowed to contact his children.
"That's what I'll hope you'll do -- is allow me to transfer, not money, but time and guidance," said Reiser. "They need that."
Arturo Gonzalez, the children's lawyer, asked earlier in the trial that Rory, 12, and Niorline, 11, be given the rights to their father's intellectual property if he cannot pay the $25 million requested. Gonzalez wants $10 million for each child and a shared $5 million for punitive damages.
Outside of court, Gonzalez called Reiser's closing arguments "frightening" and that the large figure given for punitive damages would not reform the convicted
"Society has benefited from Mr. Reiser not being on the street," Gonzalez said.
Reiser claimed once again that Nina Reiser had Munchausen syndrome by proxy, a disorder where parents fake illnesses in their children for attention, and had their children diagnosed with ADHD, autism and a variety of "falsified diagnoses." He said he feared that they would have to undergo nearly 150 surgeries if Nina Reiser lived.
"My heart didn't want me to kill her," Reiser said. But he said he was "forced to kill her" because he was worried that she'd somehow harm the children.
He also blamed Irina Sharanova, the children's maternal grandmother whom they live with in Russia, and Ellen Doren, a friend of Nina who testified earlier in the trial, in diagnosing the children with other aliments.
Reiser's arguments became heated when he accused Sean Sturgeon, a family friend, of threatening his children.
Sturgeon, who was not named in the suit and had not previously attended the trial, was in the court's audience Monday and yelled, "Leave me out of it," at Reiser when he brought up his name.
He was escorted out by bailiffs but said "goodbye, Hans" before walking out.
Jury deliberations are underway and will continue Tuesday.