Detective Spearman announced during a press conference that authorities believed Norma frequented The Plains, Athens, Nelsonville and Glouster areas. By Autumn 2, the mystery woman was found when she came forward after learning of Marcie’s death. She was one who testified at the Athens Grand Jury, which handed down a superseded indictment against Cheryl Willis.
According to Norma, she told the Grand Jury that Marcie was a good child who loved to ride her toy motorcycle, or play dress up, or paint her fingernails and play with her Barbies. “She loved her Barbies,” said Norma. Nobody was allowed to touch the Barbie playhouse, because Marcie had the Barbies “just always a certain way.”
On Autumn 7, Cheryl was arraigned in Athens County Common Pleas Court. She entered the courtroom in tears and wearing jailhouse orange. She pled not guilty to aggravated murder and child endangerment.
Assigned to the case was Assistant Prosecutor thirty-one-year-old Clayton Black. The stout dark-eyed and dark-haired man was running for re-election. He hailed from Nelsonville, Ohio, population 5,392, and had graduated from the Cleveland Marshall College of Law in 2006.
Cheryl’s Attorney spoke for her, telling the court the same story Cheryl had given to authorities and paramedics; Marcie had a normal day on May 23. However, after returning home from preschool, she fell to the floor from a distance of no more then the height of a four-year-old. She suddenly appeared to undergo some type of seizure involving tremors.