The mother of a 12-year-old girl accused of murdering her mother has filed a motion asking a judge to allow her to see her daughter, in the process alleging the alleged killer is in a state of suspended animation.
“It has been more than four years since the victim’s disappearance and she continues to be a victim of a crime committed by a man who is in suspended animation,” lawyer James Pappas told the Los Angeles County Superior Court on Tuesday.
“She is not in a position to assist with her own defense, and the defendant is not available to be in court,” Pappis said.
“I am requesting that the defendant be allowed to have a seat in court and have the opportunity to be heard.”
The motion was filed by attorney Michael O’Sullivan, who also represents the victim and the mother of the boy, who is still in custody.
“I am asking for the court to allow the defendant to sit in the courtroom,” O’Brien said.
O’Sullivan said the case is “one of the most egregious miscarriages of justice I have seen in my years of law enforcement.”
He added that the mother, who has not been charged with the crime, “has not been able to have an honest conversation with the defendant.”
The court has not yet heard the motion, but a judge has set a hearing for March 21.
The case has been one of the country’s largest missing persons investigations, and it’s the first time a court has heard an accused killer’s case since the case was reopened after the death of Sandra Bland in 2015.
The case was opened when Bland was found dead in a jail cell.
Bland, a Texas woman, was arrested and charged with felony murder and attempted murder after a grand jury declined to indict her.
A judge initially declined to charge Bland because she did not have a warrant to search Bland’s vehicle, which was found in a storage facility, where she was arrested.
A grand jury cleared Bland of the crime in March and she was released from jail after serving just over a year of a 14-year sentence for a felony robbery conviction.
In a press release, O’ Sullivan said Bland’s case has become “a source of frustration and anguish for me and for all of us who care about missing and murdered children.”
In 2016, Ovens mother, Michelle, and sister, Rachel, pleaded for help in the case.
“Our mother has suffered so much and still continues to struggle with this very personal issue,” Michelle Oven said.
The Oven family told NBC affiliate KABC that Michelle O’Neill was a “lone wolf,” and Rachel O’Nion told NBC News that the family was “not going to rest until justice is done for Sandra Bland.”
“This case is about justice, and Sandra Bland’s death is a reminder that we are not alone,” Rachel Oven added.