Hickory, North Carolina
Elisa Baker, charged with the disappearance and murder of her stepdaughter, 10 year old Zahra Baker, will be arraigned before Catawba County Judge Timothy Kincaid on Sept.12, 2011.
Baker is charged with second degree murder of Zahra Baker in the fall of 2010. She should learn today where and when her trial will take place.
Learn more about the tragic death of Zahra and watch the video, after the jump.
UPDATE: Baker pleads guilty, is sentenced. September 15, 2011 below
Scott Reilly, attorney for Elisa Baker, strongly felt that pretrial publicity would jeopardize his client’s chances for a fair trial and presented his argument before Judge Timothy Kincaid. The change was granted in August, but it won’t be announced when and where until Baker’s arraignment today, September 12, 2011.
UPDATE: September 15, 2011
A North Carolina woman has been sentenced to up to 18 years in prison for the murder of her disabled 10-year-old stepdaughter, whose dismembered remains were found scattered at multiple sites around the state last year.
Elisa Baker pleaded guilty to second degree murder in Catawba County Superior Court on Thursday, nearly a year after her stepdaughter, Zahra Baker, was reported missing.
UPDATE: Baker’s arraignment has been postponed until Wednesday, September 14, 2011.
Lawyers appearing in Catawba County Superior Court Monday said they had spoken with Judge Timothy Kincaid, who agreed to move the hearing to Wednesday morning. Prosecutors and defense lawyers for 43-year-old Elisa Baker wouldn’t explain the reason for the delay.
Elisa Baker has already managed to catch a few breaks—-the death penalty was taken off the table, in exchange for her disclosing where Zhara Baker’s dismembered body parts were, a federal judge ruled last month that her trial for drug trafficking must be delayed, and she was granted a change of venue.
Under the terms of a written agreement between Elisa Baker and the prosecutors, she would not face the death penalty or life in prison if she continues to cooperate in the investigation.
Zahra Baker was 10 years old when she was reported missing last October.The little girl from Australia had suffered the loss of her leg as well as her hearing due to childhood cancer. She moved to America with her father, Adam Baker, when he married Elisa—they met online.
Elisa Baker maintains that Adam dismembered his daughter’s body but he has not been charged to date.
Haywood and Buncombe counties are rumored to be among those considered for the trial. Both are close to Asheville, N.C.
Regardless of where the murder trial is held, Elisa Baker will be in the court system for quite awhile. She faces many unrelated charges.
She also faces other state charges, most of them unrelated to Zahra Baker’s death, including bigamy, obtaining property by false pretenses and identity fraud. In addition, she faces federal charges. Federal authorities have charged her with seven counts of drug trafficking. They say she distributed and conspired to distribute drugs, including oxycodone and hydrocodone, between 2006 and October, 2010.
What say you about Ms. Baker’s ability to catch so many breaks from the prosecution? Frankly, I’m a bit disgusted, but understand that by all means, the alleged criminal must be protected. Regardless of how heinous the crime.
Nah—actually I don’t understand criminal rights at all. I tend to side with victims and their loved ones.
Please leave your thoughts and theories in the comment section beneath the video, and check back for updates.