Monday, September 14, 2009

Stacey Barker Heads Back To Court

This entry is an update on the Stacey Marie Barker murder case out of Lancaster, CA.. Stacey Barker is a 24 year old woman from Lancaster accused of suffocating her 18 month old daughter, Emma Leigh Barker, to death on March 18, 2009.

Stacey Barker initially told police Emma was abducted from her car in the parking lot of a Lancaster, CA park as they prepared to leave. She claimed she was knocked out by the kidnapper and woke up six hours later, several miles away at the Palmdale Park-n-Ride. Detectives said Barker had injuries consistent with a struggle, including bruises on her head and was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Authorities say Barker later admitted making up the abduction story and inflicting the wounds on herself. She said the little girl died accidentally, but the fear of being blamed caused her to panic and leave the girl's body near the freeway. Barker led police to Emma’s body 12 hours later, dumped in a grassy lot near the Golden State Freeway in Sylmar, CA.

On April 27 Barker was arrested and the charges filed against the young mother include murder, assault on a child causing death and child abuse. The complaint alleges that Barker willfully caused and permitted the child to be injured and harmed and that injury resulted in death.

After a two-day preliminary hearing, Judge Carlos A. Chung ruled on July 27 that he found probable cause to hold Stacey Barker over for trial in the murder of Emma. On August 10, Barker formally pled Not Guilty to all counts. She is being housed in the Century Regional Detention Facility in the city of Lynwood on $1 million bail.

For complete details from earlier coverage and links to media coverage click here.

A pre-trial hearing was held on September 9 at the Antelope Valley Courthouse with Judge Hayden Zackey presiding. Deputy District Attorney (DDA) S. Kelly Cromer represented the people and Stacey Barker was represented by Public Defender (PD), Roberto F. Dager. The details in this report on the hearing will come from postings by Tori and friends, Anurse and TheGoodTwin (TGT). They were kind enough to attend the hearing and share some details with us. While there wasn’t a lot accomplished in SB’s hearing it was a remarkable day in court for the girls.

This courtroom has 3 sections, in the middle there are 5 rows of about 10 seats behind the Attorneys and Defendants table and then 4 rows of 5 seats in each row on the sides. The bailiff will not let ANYONE sit in the front row of the middle section, those seats have to remain empty at all times. For some reason this is the rule in all the courtrooms at this courthouse, most likely because from the middle front row you are in touching distance of the attorneys and defendants.

Today the only people in court “for” Stacey Barker aka ”Smother Mother” seem to be her grandparents and boyfriend Brendan (BB). They are seated in the middle section in the second row, we were on the right side of the courtroom behind them, there is just a 2 foot aisle between the rows of seats so all they had to do was look to the right and they could see us. For some reason the grandparents seemed to look at us a lot, you could even say they were staring. We don’t know if they know who we are but it doesn’t matter, it was not us who did something wrong. Brendan kept fidgeting in his seat and playing with his hands, like he was checking to see if they were smelly. Which reminds me….

The judge had several cases ahead of SB, one of the people was a guy who sat right in front of us. He smelled so bad , we were about to lose it….nurse kept putting scented lotion on her hands and fanning to cover the smell. Maybe Brendan thought it was him that smelled when in fact it was this guy (nicknamed pig pen)...or his fingers smelled better than the aroma pig pen was putting off and he was trying to rid his nose of the odor…who knows… at any rate, if you should ever find yourself in this predicament, Tori learned from Sara on CSI that if you smile, it suppresses the gag reflex.

When SB was brought into the courtroom she had her hair pulled back in the front and the yellow jailhouse garb. She had makeup on and didn’t look as though she was in any type of distress today . SB barely acknowledged her grandparents. She gave a half smirk/smile to her boyfriend and flung that I don’t give a flying rats @ss attitude at TGT when she saw her. (They do know each other)

When it was SB’s turn the PD asked the judge to speak with him ex parte, He said something about some appointments. ( ex parte refers to motions, hearings or orders granted on the request of and for the benefit of one party only.) The courtroom was then cleared, the PD said it was ok for SB’s family to stay, but they left the courtroom too.

As we were leaving the courtroom there was a woman that sounded mad at the bailiff as she loudly complained, ”They said this was open to the public and now they kick us out.”

The girls nicknamed this lady “Braids“ or “Mystery Lady 2“. (If you have followed Tori’s prior courtroom reports, there is a Mystery Lady1 who didn’t attend today) Tori said Braids looked to be in her late 70‘s or early 80‘s. Of course her hair was gray, and she had about 50 small braids pinned up (like pinwheels) around her head, but it was very messy and looks like she doesn‘t take them down very often. Not surprising she was dressed like an old lady with a mid knee skirt, long socks, an “old lady“ shirt with a sweater. Tori wrote down the conversation she had with Braids in the hallway outside of the courtroom, so here that is…..

Because she was taking notes, I flat out asked her who she was reporting for? She told me that she had ulterior motives for sitting in on the trials. Then she asked was that Stacey Barker sitting there? She did not know SB and asked who was her family? She said something about her neighborhood.... and her son's middle name was Hayden, same as the Judges name...she was talking gibberish so I have no idea why she is there....even after talking with her! I know you are all scratching your heads reading this part….well, that is how we all felt after speaking with her...I wrote it just the way she said it. She was so loud in the courtroom but in the hall I struggled to hear her … maybe I wasn't paying attention because I was looking at her braids the whole time....LOL

(The girls commented about another defendant that they nicknamed Devil Dude. The following is what one of the girls wrote about this guy. I included the information about him, Pig Pen, and Braids so you would get a feel for the vibe at the courthouse, it is definitely not a pleasant place)

Devil dude was a very creepy guy covered in tattoos ( I love tattoos) but they were all over his bald head, on his face all over his hands and arms, he had a very evil look to him, his eyes were seriously creepy...He was brought in to the courtroom after we were all asked to clear the room...He was all shackled up, he had the handcuffs, the chain around his waist, and the bracelets around his ankles...There were I think like 3 or 4 guards in the room....I don’t know what he did, but as we were allowed back in the courtroom, he looked at everyone in the eyes, like he was getting a image of us in his head...He was just creepy, we all had shivers when he looked at us...

When we went back on the record in the courtroom Judge Zackey told the PD, Roberto Dager, that he needed to make all the reports available to the DDA, Kelly Cromer, before the next court date which is October 6.

The Judge then asked SB if the October date was ok with her and her reply blew me away…she said, “yeah, I’m not going anywhere”. Her tone sounded very sarcastic. She may have just been trying to be funny, but if so it didn’t work because the Judge told her, “I know that, but I have to ask you anyway because it has to do with the time and your right to a speedy trial.” He sounded sarcastic too. My impression of him is he is a cool judge. He has a certain manner, like it takes a lot to make him mad, not a jerk like some judges.. He is someone who I think would be a nice guy outside of court too.

So the date was set for her to come back and set a trial date for sometime within 60 days of the October 6 hearing. Court was recessed.
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  1. That's a great update! Thank you Katfish, Toria and TGT for providing all the information and going ons at the courthouse.
    That "devil guy" must have commited a really horrible crime. Yikes! I bet he's the type that can give you nightmares.
    I see that sb is back to her smug demeanor as she was at her first two or three apearances.
    I wonder who bought and suplied her with makeup? LOL

  2. Hi my friend! Great visual!! I felt like I was there to the point I kept sniffing the air looking for the "smell" I wonder if that's what BB was doing? Or maybe he put on lemon fresh soap to cover up smelly dude.

    OMG you guys had me in stitches over at NP!!

    That new picture of Emma made me weep all over again. What a precious baby. Too bad her mommy didn't think so.

    I agree the smothering b!tch is not going to get out on crazy charges, but let the idiot try. She has a PD on a career making case if he gets her off. I just wonder if smother monster knows there are no nut houses in CA that are as well kept as the newer prisons. If he gets her off on crazy, thats where she goes right? I would take my chance at the big house.

    Maybe she thinks she will be safer in the nut house, as prisoners like to mess with baby killers. But we now know "she didn't do it." Right?

    I think I know what is going on with the snarky remarks. We were all upset over the possibility of sb taking a deal, (I'm sitting here shaking my head over the thought of her not taking it vs getting out on insanity.) That deal is going to look real good once she gets to the crazy house)
    anyway, emotions ran high for a couple of days, not much happened at the hearing, as far as anything new for sure. (everything we "know" is a maybe) so with nothing new to toss around, the emotions need to be released and who better to take them them out on than than people we don't know or people who have made remarks we didn't like in the past. The same thing started happening on the KC boards when progress started slowing down to make way for all the legal mumbo jumbo.

    Email to follow. LCM

  3. Syn, she probably has an account set up to buy necessities, like make up and KC fave Cheesy Doodles. You can access it thru the LA jails link. LCM

  4. Kat,
    I hear NP is now different... well, the last date 12/17/09 another delay...Dagger the Pd wants to run a "pitchess Motion" he said he would do it at the next court date because Cromer, DDA had just gotten a copy of the motions he wanted to be heard but she said NO WAY Jose, you just gave me them a second ago and I have not had a chance to review them...she is one tuff lady...good for her. the only thing we heard was something about a 1045???? the PD said to the family that the trial will not start before her birthday (SB'S) 1/23?? I will let you know what happens at the next date no matter what..any questions you know how to get to or email.. :)