86.8 F
Cruz Bay
Tuesday, June 18, 2024
HomeNewsLocal newsWoman Accused of Killing 9-Year-Old Pleads Not Guilty

Woman Accused of Killing 9-Year-Old Pleads Not Guilty

Superior Court Judge Sigrid Tejo was assigned to the murder case of 32-year-old Anyah Smith. (Source file photo)

The woman accused of killing her 9-year-old daughter pleaded not guilty at an arraignment hearing held in Superior Court on Friday. Defendant Anyah Smith was one of several inmates who entered their pleas by way of live stream video from the Criminal Justice Complex on St. Thomas.

Each hearing took less than five minutes, with Magistrate Judge Simone Van Holten-Turnbull assigning each case to a judge. Superior Court Judge Sigrid Tejo was chosen to preside over Smith’s case, pre-trial hearings leading up to a criminal trial.

Smith is charged with first- and second-degree murder, assault, child abuse, child neglect, and reckless endangerment in connection with the death of Ja’Qeada Isaac on March 16. Investigators said they found the victim’s photo identification card in the waters of Charlotte Amalie Harbor along with a cinder block attached to an electrical cord.

They also found Smith’s shoes placed at the bottom of the Emile White Memorial on Veterans Drive a short distance away. The accused was found by relatives and police walking barefoot near Vitraco Mall while carrying the victim on her back.

Attempts to resuscitate the child were unsuccessful. At the initial court hearing on March 18, the magistrate ordered Smith to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

There was no mention of the evaluation or its results at Friday’s arraignment. Van Holten-Turnbull told Smith that a scheduling order would be sent over to the jail for her to read and sign. The defendant was also told that the bail conditions set at the earlier hearing would remain in effect for the duration of her court case.

She is currently being held on $750,000 bail. Her next scheduled hearing before Tejo is a discovery hearing on Aug. 26.

No trial date has been scheduled so far. The website for Turnbull’s Funeral Home includes a memorial for Little Miss Ja’Qeada Isaac with no date posted for her last rites.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.

Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.