Attorney requests more time

Date: 2009-01-07
Source: somdnews.com

CAROL HARVAT

The mother whose adopted daughters were found dead in her home, Renee Bowman, 43, of Lusby did not want to sit in at her Jan. 5 pretrial date at the Calvert County Circuit Court, and her attorney requested a followup hearing.

Calvert County Public Defender Dorothy Gardner Hodge said Bowman, who was waiting downstairs guarded in lock up, "did not wish to be brought up." Hodge told Judge Marjorie Clagett that she had not finished reviewing all the discovery evidence and requested a follow up pretrial.

"There's so much information, I haven't had a chance to look at it all," she said.

Bowman, who allegedly admitted to beating her 7-year-old adopted daughter with a hard-heeled shoe when she was initially questioned by police on Sept. 26, 2008, was indicted on Oct. 20 with first- and second-degree attempted murder, according to court records. She was originally charged with first-degree assault and two charges of child abuse on Sept. 27 with incident dates ranging from Feb. 1 to Sept. 26, 2008, court records state.

A neighbor found Bowman's now 8-year-old adopted daughter wandering in the area of Pawnee Lane and Buckskin Trail near her home in Lusby on Sept. 26. She had cuts and bruises all over her body and was wearing a long T-shirt that was "soaked in blood and human feces," charging documents state. The girl was remanded into the care of Calvert County Child Protective Services and remains there.

When police searched Bowman's Chesapeake Ranch Estates home for evidence in relation to child abuse, they found two frozen bodies in a freezer in her basement. An autopsy revealed that the bodies were those of Bowman's two other adopted daughters, Jasmine Bowman, 9, and Minnet Bowman, 11. The two girls, along with the 8-year-old girl, were adopted through Washington, D.C.'s Child Welfare Agency.

Montgomery County police reported on Dec. 17 that a medical examiner determined the two girls died from asphyxiation, but the medical examiner's office said it could not confirm the causes of death.

Bowman has not been charged with the two deaths, which police have said happened in Montgomery County.

The deaths are being investigated as homicides, Montgomery County police said.

In court on Monday, Hodge told Clagett that she had met with the defendant, and Hodge agreed to keep March 2 as a plea hearing date and March 24 as the beginning date for a jury trial.

According to judicial records, Calvert County State's Attorney Laura Martin is listed as the prosecutor of the case, and Bowman remains at the Calvert County Detention Center.

charvat@somdnews.com

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