Michigan women accused of killing two of her children and putting them in her freezer enters not guilty plea.
DETROIT, MICHIGAN, UNITED STATES (APRIL 2, 2015) (NBC) – A Detroit mother has pleaded not guilty after being charged with torturing and murdering two of her children found last month in a freezer in her apartment, her defense attorney said on Thursday (April 2) .
Mitchelle Angela Blair, 35, will face mandatory life in prison without parole if convicted of the felony murders of Stoni Blair, 13, and Stephen Berry, 9, whose frozen bodies were found on March 24, the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office said.
Blair also has been charged with two counts of premeditated murder, two counts of torture, four counts of child abuse, and one count of committing child abuse first degree in the presence of another child.
The Wayne County medical examiner has said that Stoni Blair died from multiple blunt trauma and Berry from multiple blunt trauma and thermal injuries, declaring their deaths homicides.
A juvenile court petition filed last week accused Blair of extensively abusing her surviving children, a 17-year-old daughter and an 8-year-old son. They were taken into protective custody on Tuesday, prosecutors said.
The petition accused Blair of torturing Berry for about two weeks before his death in August 2012, tying a belt around his neck, tossing hot water on him while he showered and putting a plastic bag over his head.
Blair was accused in the petition of strangling Stoni Blair with a T-shirt and using a plastic bag to suffocate her in May 2013 after the girl said she did not like her other siblings.
Blair was charged with felony child abuse after a court officer and crew found the bodies when they were carrying out an eviction at her apartment.
Blair’s defense attorney Wyatt Harris entered the not guilty plea on her behalf during the arraignment on Thursday morning. Harris has requested an independent psychiatric evaluation in addition to the one ordered by the state.