Jhessye Shockley's mom pleads not guilty to murder, child abuse

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by Jennifer Thomas

Video report by Kristine Harrington

Posted on September 17, 2012 at 5:25 PM

Updated Monday, Sep 17 at 5:40 PM

PHOENIX -- The mother of a 5-year-old Glendale girl missing for 11 months pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and child abuse charges Monday morning.

Police believe Jerice Hunter killed her daughter, Jhessye Shockley, then dumped her body in a Tempe trash bin.

Hunter reported her daughter missing on Oct. 11. Hunter told police that she went out to run an errand and left Jhessye in the care of her siblings. She said Jhessye was gone when she returned.

Police canvassed the neighborhood around the family's apartment near Glendale and 45th avenues then searched a landfill for four months, but did not find Jhessye's remains.

Hunter was arrested on Sept. 6 and is being held on $500,000 bond.

Her next court date is scheduled for Nov. 1.
 

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