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Defense team in Carlisle buried baby case wants two trials

Posted at 10:23 AM, Jul 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-03 10:25:09-04

WARREN COUNTY, Ohio -- Attorneys for a Carlisle woman accused of killing her newborn baby girl and burying her in the backyard of her parents’ house in May 2017 is requesting a break of charges and two trials,The Journal-News reported.

Two days after Brooke Skylar Richardson was in Warren County Common Pleas Court for a pre-trial hearing, attorneys Charles H. and Charles M. Rittgers filed the motion of severance today.

Richardson is charged with aggravated murder, involuntary manslaughter, endangering children, tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse.

The defense team is requesting that the court order one trial for the charges pertaining to the death of the baby and another trial for tampering with evidence and abuse of corpse.

The defense argues that trying all the charges together would be prejudicial to Richardson.

There is “always a danger when several crimes are tried together, the jury may use the evidence cumulatively” and where evidence “upon any one of the charges might not have persuaded (the jurors) of accused’s guilt, the sum of it will convince them as to all,” the defense team wrote in the motion citing case law.

At Monday’s hearing, the defense attorneys and Assistant County Prosecutor Steven Knippen agreed that there had been no plea offers for the defendant, who is now 20.

Another pre-trial hearing was set for Aug. 19 ahead of Richardson’s scheduled trial on Sept. 3.

The Journal-News is a media partner of WCPO.