Polk cyberbullying suspect in court - WFLA News Channel 8

Polk cyberbullying suspect in court

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One of the two young girls charged in the Polk County cyber bullying case appeared before a judge this morning. 12-year old Katelyn Roman was in court for an arraignment hearing on an aggravated stalking charge. 

Generally, a defendant pleads either guilty or not guilty to the charge at that hearing, but the arraignment was delayed until next week.  After the hearing, Jose Baez, who successfully defended Casey Anthony, questioned why his client was arrested.  "Maybe I'm missing something, I don't think I am, I think I'm fairly thorough, but I can tell you I have not seen anything that rises to the level of any criminal conduct, especially that of a felony."  Said Baez.  He also questioned the Sheriff Grady Judd's motives.  "This is a child. And, why is this child being thrown and thrust into the spotlight? Why is this child having to go to court with cameras following her? And why is the sheriff of the county stuffing her mug shot in front of all the cameras? I think these questions need to be asked. "

 The sheriff fired back, saying the evidence in this case is overwhelming.  "We have all the evidence in the world. We have all the witnesses in the world."  Said Judd.  "I'll tell you what Jose Baez needs to do, I'll help him practice law a little bit if he promises not to have the state attorney arrest me. Jose, go down to the state attorney's office, set down with the prosecutors, and work out what's in the best interest of your client. " 

The Polk County Sheriff's Office arrested Roman and 14-year old Guadalupe Shaw earlier this month. Investigators say the two relentlessly bullied 12-year old Rebecca Sedwick.  Sedwick eventually jumped to her death at an abandoned cement plant.

 Roman's arraignment is now scheduled to take place at 1:30 on October 29th.  The judge also set a trial date for November 4th.

Related Story: Polk Sheriff Grady Judd announces arrests in bullying case
Investigators say the two posted nasty messages online about 12-year old Rebecca Sedwick. Sedwick jumped to her death at an abandoned cement plant. 

Jose Baez, who defended Casey Anthony, has taken on this case and calls his client a victim as well. He says since Sheriff Grady Judd announced the charges, she has been the victim of bullying.

At today's hearing, the judge allowed Roman to use a computer for school work, and said she is allowed to go outside of her home. 

She is currently being held on home detention and has been suspended from school. Roman's arraignment hearing has been rescheduled for October 29th at 1:30.  The judge set a trial date for November 4th.

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