Mother Challenges Death Penalty Eligibility in Murder of 5-Year-Old Found Drowned

Mother Challenges Death Penalty Eligibility in Murder of 5-Year-Old Found Drowned

Trying to spare her from the death penalty, the defense of an Arkansas mother claims she had nothing to do with her live-in boyfriend’s drowning of her 5-year-old son in a toilet.

Ashley Rolland and Nathan Bridges are both accused of capital murder in connection with the horrific death of young Blu Rolland. However, the mother’s lawyer contends that the evidence disqualifies her client from receiving the death penalty in accordance with case law.

“In this case, the State filed a criminal information against Rolland stating that the codefendant, Nathan Bridges, was solely responsible for the homicidal act and that Rolland was merely present at the scene. The State declined to address how Rolland participated in the murder or how she was otherwise involved,” attorney Erin Lewis stated in a filing dated Thursday. “Other discovery produced to Defendant by the State includes a statement from a witness present at the residence on the night of incident telling law enforcement that Rolland was screaming ‘Stop it!’ to the co-defendant. These facts, when viewed in conjunction with the case law cited to above, demonstrate that Rolland is not eligible for the death penalty.”

According to Lee County, Arkansas, authorities, Blu bit Bridges after the youngster got his finger in his mouth. In response, Bridges is said to have drowned the toddler in a toilet.

Authorities earlier wrote, “Rolland stated that she was in the living room while [Blu] was in the bathroom with Bridges.” Bridges apparently stated that when she returned from the restroom, she saw her kid limp and having trouble breathing.

The child’s body was then buried beneath the house by Bridges, who also made a hole in the floor and a hole in the earth.

Bridges allegedly burned her 6-year-old daughter’s head by submerging her “head and upper torso under hot water in the bathtub” as “punishment for her behavior issues,” according to Rolland.

Authorities, however, claim that she initially informed them that Blu was not at home and that the burns were the result of an allergic reaction.

Defendant Rolland faces charges of capital murder, first-degree violence, tampering with physical evidence, abuse of a corpse, and endangering the welfare of a juvenile.

In addition, she faces two counts of encouraging child abuse, one of which relates to the injuries she caused to her daughter.

Additionally, Bridges’s case is still pending. He faces charges of first-degree violence, capital murder, misuse of a corpse, tampering with evidence, and endangering the welfare of a kid.