Comments Off on Natrona County District Court Judge allows past evidence in case against Casper woman, Stephanie Shirts, 25, charged with burning infant with a hot pan; Shirts along with infant’s mother, Bobbi Humphreys, and Jason Cathcart, 37, also charged with child endangerment with Methamphetamine

A Natrona County District Court judge decided Tuesday to allow prosecutors to introduce past evidence of child abuse in the case of a Casper woman accused of burning a baby’s face with a hot pan in September.

Stephanie Shirts, 25, is charged with four counts of child abuse, four counts of child endangerment with methamphetamine and one count of aggravated child abuse.

She faces 65 years in prison for allegedly burning the infant’s face and shaking the baby with enough force to require trauma care. Her trial is set to begin Monday.

Natrona County District Attorney Mike Blonigen presented evidence Tuesday suggesting that Shirts, sometime before the burning allegations, repeatedly struck a small child at a Casper convenience store. The child was reportedly buckled in a car seat in the back seat of Shirts’ car.

The Aug. 26 incident was reported by two witnesses and caught on store surveillance cameras. Although Casper police officers investigated the report, no arrests were made.

Blonigen said that evidence relates to the ongoing case against Shirts. Natrona County District Judge Catherine Wilking agreed, ruling the new evidence admissible for trial.

Shirts’ attorney, Sarah Jacobs, questioned the Casper Police Department’s handling of her client’s interrogation. Her client was detained without proper notification of her Miranda rights, Jacobs said.

“Ms. Shirts’ statement wasn’t made in a voluntary fashion,” the attorney said. “She did not understand what rights she was giving up. She sat in a room for 12 hours and didn’t know what was going on.”

Detective Sarah Nelson said the notification of Miranda rights was given in accordance with standard department practices.

The court was given a transcript and video evidence of Shirts’ interrogation.

Wilking ruled that Shirts received a proper Miranda warning and acted in a voluntary fashion.

Shirts is also charged with suffocating the 14-month-old girl with a blanket, according to a police report. The infant was transferred from Wyoming Medical Center to the children’s hospital in Aurora, Colorado, to treat a brain bleed and bleeding in the eyes.

The infant’s mother, Bobbi Humphreys, is charged with one count of child endangerment with methamphetamine and one count each of felony and misdemeanor possession of a controlled substance.

Jason Cathcart, 37, who lives with Shirts and Humphreys, is charged with four counts of child endangerment with methamphetamine and two counts of drug possession.

Shirts was released on $100,000 bond earlier this year. The bond was revoked in October after police arrested Shirts for shoplifting. She remains in custody.

Wilking denied a motion to further delay Shirts’ trial in order to hear more expert testimony.








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