Indiana high court rejects appeal in malnourished teen case

ANDERSON, Ind. (AP) — The Indiana Supreme Court has declined to hear the appeal of a central Indiana woman who pleaded guilty to neglecting her 15-year-old granddaughter, who was found covered in feces and weighing only 52 pounds.

The court ruled unanimously last week not to accept transfer of 56-year-old Joetta Sells’ appeal of a state Court of Appeals decision that upheld her 24-year sentence for pleading guilty to neglect and battery charges.

The Herald Bulletin reports Sells’ attorney, Rick Walker, says his client can still seek post-conviction relief.

Firefighters called to Sells’ Anderson home in December 2014 found her granddaughter malnourished, covered in feces and suffering from a skull fracture.

Sells’ husband and her adult daughter were also convicted of neglect and other charges in the case and are serving prison sentences.


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