(BENTON, IL) — It looks like the trial for a West Frankfort woman accused of drowning and hiding her 8-year-old daughter’s body may finally get underway soon in Franklin County. Mary Jophlin recently appeared in Franklin County Court with her attorney, Terry Green. During that appearance, Judge Tom Tedeschi said a psychological report of an expert witness hired by the defense did exist and had been exchanged. Tedeschi told Green and State’s Attorney Evan Owens that he wanted them to come back at the final pretrial hearing with a trial date in mind. In July 2011, Jophlin was charged with murder, concealing a homicidal death and obstruction of justice for what police said was her role in the death of her daughter, Alexis Smothers. Police found the girl’s body in the basement of the family home in the 1700 block of East Oak Street in West Frankfort. Reports say Jophlin called police saying Alexis was missing prior to the body being found. Jophlin’s final pretrial is set for April 30. She remains lodged in the Franklin County Jail and continues to waive her right to a speedy trial.

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