Alleged child-seller and buyers' trials set
July trials are scheduled for a Glenmora woman accused of selling two children for a bird and cash and the Eunice-area couple who allegedly purchased them.
The trio pleaded not guilty in arraignments before Evangeline Parish District Judge Thomas Fuselier in Ville Platte.
Donna Greenwell, 53, is accused of selling the children to Paul J. Romero, 40, and Lynn Romero, 27.
Greenwell's trial is set July 27; the Romero couple will be tried July 20.
The five-year-old boy and his four-year-old sister at the center of the case had allegedly been placed in Greenwell's care by their birth mother.
Greenwell's attorney has asserted there was no swap or sale involved and that Greenwell was trying to find a suitable home for the children.
The Romeros have not spoken to the media, either directly or through their attorney.
Glenmora Officer Jennifer Potter began the case investigation, which led her to the Eunice Police Department and Detectives Mike Perry and Robert “Beef” Brickley, Jr.
As the investigation continued, Brickley contacted Dupre, because the swap allegedly occurred in Evangeline Parish. The Romeros were approached and detained at McDonald’s in Eunice on Saturday, February 21. All three were charged during the following week’s investigation with aggravated kidnapping.
The kidnapping charge was dropped when authorities determined that their mother had entrusted Greenwell with the childrens' care.
The charge of sale of a minor child carries a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment and a $50,000 fine.