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Trial date set for case linked to baby's death

February 24, 2011

COLUMBIA CITY — The Columbia City woman charged with drug crimes and the neglect of a dependent will face trial in June.
Janel M. Creech, 36, has been in the Whitley County jail since Jan. 11 after being charged Jan. 7 with manufacturing methamphetamine and other drug-related offenses.
The drug-related charges were filed after emergency personnel responded to a 911 call on Jan. 3 in which Creech’s 5-month-old daughter, Taylor, was rushed to the hospital, where she was later pronounced dead.
On Feb. 4, Whitley County Prosecutor Matt Rentschler filed an additional charge against both Creech and her boyfriend, Travis A. Wonderly, 21, of neglect of a dependent resulting in death. The charge is a Class A felony. Creech is also charged with violating probation.
Wonderly is scheduled for a pre-trial conference on Monday at 9 a.m.
Creech was in court Tuesday for her pre-trial conference and her defense attorney Brad Voelz said the defense felt the additional charge was unwarranted.
“We don’t believe there’s any evidence to support the charge or any probable cause,” Voelz said to Whitley County Circuit Court Judge James Heuer.
“But, we don’t feel there’s anything we can do about it.”
Heuer set the case for a trial June 28 and allowed three days on the docket for the trial.
The judge also set a final pre-trial conference for June 20 and scheduled a hearing on the probation violation charge for that same time.
According to the Whitley County Coroner’s Office, results of the baby girl’s autopsy have not come back from the pathologist assigned to provide a toxicology report on the infant.


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