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Jury finds Laurie and Alexis Barry not guilty in death of Selah Kaden in Iowa County

  • Updated
Barry trial

IOWA COUNTY (WKOW) -- An Iowa County jury has found Laurie and Alexis Barry not guilty in connection to the death of Selah Kaden.

The mother and daughter were caring for Kaden at the time of her death.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys for Laurie and Alexis Barry finished closing arguments earlier Tuesday, before the jury went into deliberations.

Kaden died in May 2018.

Authorities say the teen's parents, who resided in North Carolina at the time, had temporarily placed their daughter in the care of the Barry's while they addressed the medical needs of another child. 

During prosecution testimony, Selah’s parents — Lisa and David Kaden— took the stand, explaining their daughter's emotional and psychiatric challenge and expressing their trust in the Barrys to take care of their daughter. The Kadens said they were unaware of any issues with her on the day of her death.

"At no time did we think our daughter was in danger," Lisa Kaden said. "We thought this was a continuation of her mental health issues."

Both defendants took the stand as well, giving their account of Selah’s behavioral issues, specifically what they described as “fake fainting,” a behavior her parents say they never had seen happen.

Laurie said two of those episodes took place in short succession on the day she died, but after the second one Selah never stood back up. Laurie and Alexis monitored the girl before eventually contacting emergency services.

When asked directly if she killed, beat, restrained, strangled or suffocated Selah, Laurie said "no" or "never." When Alexis was asked if she held Selah down, so Laurie could suffocate her, she responded “no.”

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