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A jailhouse coronavirus outbreak has delayed a hearing for a Colorado woman accused of murdering her stepson before transporting his remains across the country.
A court judge determined that a motions hearing for Letecia Stauch, 37, which was scheduled for last Thursday, should be postponed after a COVID-19 outbreak at El Paso County Jail, The Gazette in Colorado Springs reports. Staunch has been held at the jail since March, when she was arrested for allegedly killing her 11-year-old stepson Gannon Stauch.
She’s been charged with first-degree murder and related charges for allegedly killing Gannon with a knife or another sharp instrument in his bedroom in January, according to an arrest report obtained by 9 News in Denver. His remains were discovered by a road crew near a bridge in Florida in March and Letecia was extradited from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina — where she is originally from and had traveled to — back to Colorado.
The El Paso County Jail has reported at least 690 COVID-19 infections among its inmate population, according to The Gazette. As a result, the jail has canceled all in-person visits. Letecia was supposed to be evaluated by a psychiatrist the day before Halloween but the outbreak postponed that visit. Letecia's attorneys requested Thursday’s hearing to be delayed until at least Dec. 14 so that the psychiatric evaluation can be completed, local outlet KUSA reports.
The evaluation would be the second of its kind. A previous evaluation in September led to Letecia being found competent to stand trial for the boy’s death.
Letecia is also accused of enlisting her 17-year-old daughter to help cover up Gannon's murder. She allegedly ordered the teen girl to purchase carpet cleaner, trash bags, and other cleaning supplies. Letecia allegedly dumped Gannon's body off Highway 105 in Colorado’s Douglas County before his body was later moved to Florida.
The stepmother was the last person to see the boy alive before he vanished. She initially claimed that Gannon had gone to play with friends and then portrayed herself as the victim of false rumors about her involvement.
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