2 years later, Rich­land par­ents still wait­ing for nanny’s trial

Tri-City Herald - - Local News - BY CAMERON PROBERT cprobert@tric­i­ty­her­ald.com Cameron Probert: 509-582-1402; Twit­ter: @cameron­cprobert

The par­ents of a Rich­land tod­dler who died in

2016 have waited more than two years for their nanny to go to trial.

They made a sim­ple re­quest Thurs­day when the trial got pushed back yet again — pick a date and stick with it.

Daniel and Jennifer Schreiber made the re­quest dur­ing the Thurs­day hear­ing in the first-de­gree man­slaugh­ter case. Jo­ce­lyn M. Bel­lon, 31, of Kennewick, was sched­uled to go to trial in De­cem­ber.

They called it a 28month or­deal that started with the death of their

2-year-old son David and con­tin­ued with the grief and mem­o­ries dredged up each time they got closer to Bel­lon’s trial.

“We are work­ing par­ents, try­ing to stay afloat as we grieve the death of our first­born son,” Jennifer Schreiber read in court Thurs­day.

“With each new ex­ten­sion re­quested, Dan and I have had to shift our plans both in work and in fam­ily life. Last win­ter, we gave up op­por­tu­ni­ties to travel and to see other fam­ily mem­bers around the hol­i­days,” she said.

The con­stant shifts are leav­ing them emo­tion­ally, phys­i­cally and men­tally ex­hausted, she said.

“We come here to­day as griev­ing par­ents, and we will leave here on the last day of the trial as griev­ing par­ents,” she said. “There is no end for my hus­band and I and at best there is only some level of clo­sure that is un­promised and un­de­fined.”

The de­lays have come after the Schreibers waited nearly a year for pros­e­cu­tors to file charges, Daniel Schreiber said. They ac­cepted the rea­sons were le­git­i­mate, but wanted the sides to work to­gether on a de­fin­i­tive trial date.

The pair, whose near­est rel­a­tives are 16 hours away, made sim­i­lar con­ces­sions this year. They want her to have a fair trial, they said, but want the con­tin­ual shuf­fling to stop.

“Our pa­tience and un­der­stand­ing has its lim­its,” Daniel Schreiber said.

De­fense at­tor­ney Scott John­son said the lat­est de­lay was un­avoid­able.

One of his ex­perts, a doc­tor, be­came sick and wasn’t able to re­view ev­i­dence un­til re­cently. John­son needs the re­port back from his ex­pert to be able to in­ter­view pros­e­cu­tion wit­nesses.

The doc­tor hopes to re­view the ma­te­rial this week and share what she learns with John­son, he said. A for­mal re­port is sup­posed to come along after.

Judge Bruce Span­ner thanked the Schreibers for their pa­tience and be­ing rea­son­able. He and the at­tor­neys agreed to a Nov. 28 hear­ing, where they would talk about when the trial would be resched­uled.

David Schreiber was un­der Bel­lon’s care when he started chok­ing. He was taken to the hos­pi­tal and died the next day.

Doc­tors de­ter­mined David’s skull was frac­tured, court doc­u­ments said. In­ves­ti­ga­tors claim he was in­jured within min­utes or hours of the am­bu­lance ar­riv­ing.

Bel­lon was alone with the tod­dler and his 3month-old brother for about 1 1/2 hours.

Jo­ce­lyn M. Bel­lon

David T. Schreiber

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