Judge grants bond for mom accused of starving girl to death
by Lindsay Field
September 26, 2012 01:03 AM | 3647 views | 5 5 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Ebony Berry
Ebony Berry
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MARIETTA – Cobb County Magistrate Court Judge Frank Cox, while assisting the Cobb County Superior Court, granted a $75,000 bond for Ebony Espree Berry, who is accused of starving her daughter to death after authorities found the 16-year-old child dead in her home and weighing just 43 pounds.

Berry, 35, was arrested on June 15 at her home off Concord Road in Smyrna on felony charges of first-degree cruelty to children and murder. In July, the court found probable cause to move forward with the case.

She has remained in the Cobb County Jail without bond since that time and has not been indicted yet.

Berry’s attorney Rick Kimberly of Atlanta said his client was entitled to a bond hearing because she had been incarcerated for over 90 days.

“The judge would have had to find other evidence to still hold her without bond,” Kimberly said Tuesday afternoon. “The state didn’t even argue not to have any bond but there were discussions about the amount of the bond.”

He didn’t anticipate his client bonding out (Tuesday) but “friends are trying to gather funds for her … to be able to have that money in a reasonable time period.”

Kimberly originally requested a $50,000 bond, as opposed to the state’s request for a $100,000 bond, but Cox met them in the middle, Kimberly said.

“That’s how much we could afford,” he said.

Kimberly said he also asked for a pretrial bond because he doesn’t believe his client is a flight risk, nor does she have a record, and for the court to allow supervised visits with her children if permitted by the juvenile court, but both were denied.

Berry is not allowed to have any contact, “direct or indirect,” with any victim or witness in the case including her biological children, according to the bond hearing documents.

Kimberly said Berry’s three other children, a 15-year-old son, 8-year-old daughter and 3-month-old son, are “doing well” but that they do have “some issues” because they have lost not only their sister but also their mother at this time.

“I believe they are counseling for that though through the Department of Family and Children Services, who has the placement of the children,” he said, adding that they are in two separate foster homes.

“They were in one home together but the oldest boy had some problems and now is in a second home and seems to be doing well in school,” Kimberly said. He was given this information during a juvenile court hearing last week.

Berry has not seen or spoken to her children since she was arrested on June 15.

“She is having a tough time. This is not something that she has ever experienced before. It’s a very traumatic, sad situation,” he said.

In the meantime, Berry is allowed to live with a friend in Marietta at his home off Franklin Road while she awaits her indictment.

“(The state) indicated that they were trying to get additional information, specifically about different issues … to by knowledge, the medical examiner has still not submitted a report either and the state didn’t give a time indication about the indictment,” Kimberly said.

According to the arrest warrant, Berry is accused of cruelty to children in the first degree for “willfully” depriving her teenage daughter Markea Berry of “sustenance” and murder because malnourishment caused the child’s death.

According to the report from Cobb Police, officers were called to Berry’s home in reference to an “unresponsive female” around 1:30 p.m. on June 15.

When police arrived on the scene, they found the body of Berry’s 16-year-old daughter and the investigation revealed that she was “severely malnourished and neglected.”
Comments
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53%
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September 27, 2012
This woman is the 47%. The mother likely collecting welfare. Only the welfare checks and food stamps alloted to the daugher did not go to the daugher.

And, why are the chidren living in foster homes and not with their dad(s)? While one child starves, she's getting pregnant and having another.

The Judge's decision to allow her to post bond is inexcusable. So in Cobb county, you can now bond out on a felony murder charge if you're a single welfare mother.
tired of it
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September 26, 2012
Leave it up to Cox to give her a bond. of course he is know for giving O/R bonds to people especially ones that are the clients of certain attorney's.

nofoodforyou
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September 26, 2012
Please tell me this despicable cow will have very limited access to food. Slowly starving to death would be the icing on the cake and that is no pun, intended.
"having tough time"
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September 26, 2012
Well, what the heck! Its not her fault the kid didn't eat! What is the matter with this story?? And this woman is "having a tough time? What about the starving child? Did she have a tough time? This woman who is responsible for this dead child is being made to appear a victim??? Am I in the Twilight Zone?
M.Corps1
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September 26, 2012
Unbelievable!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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