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Court lifts gag order in case of burned, buried newborn

Court lifts gag order in case of burned, buried newborn
Posted at 2:48 PM, Mar 01, 2018

WARREN COUNTY, Ohio -- A state appeals court lifted the gag order in the case of Brooke Skylar Richardson, the 18-year-old accused of killing, burning and burying her newborn, according to the Warren County Clerk of Courts. 

On Monday, the 12th District Court of Appeals in Middletown lifted the gag order issued by Judge Donald Oda in August. The gag order prohibited the prosecution and defense from talking to the media.

“To presume that there may be news coverage that threatens the administration of justice, whether that be against the state or the defendant, is nothing more than pure speculation,” the court opinion reads. 

Richardson, 18, is accused of killing her newborn baby, burning the body and burying the remains in her backyard "all within a few hours" of the baby's birth, according to Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell. In addition to aggravated murder, she's charged with involuntary manslaughter, endangering children, tampering with evidence and abuse of a corpse.

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Fornshell said the baby was born at about 38 weeks to 40 weeks — full term, and the baby was born alive.

Richardson pleaded not guilty to the charges in August. Her attorney insists that Richardson "did not kill her baby."

WCPO media partner The Journal-News contributed to this report.