Alexander Whipple appeared in court again on Monday. The state has added new felonies to the list of charges he faces in connection with the death of his niece, five-year-old Lizzy Shelley of Logan.
In the brief Monday appearance in First District Court in Logan, Whipple, 21, said nothing. Wearing a bright pink jumpsuit, he stood silently next to his attorney as Judge Kevin Allen set a date for a preliminary hearing.
It was Whipple’s first time before a judge since the state added charges of sodomy and rape of a child. Whipple had previously been charged with a long list of felonies, including murder and kidnapping.
Outside the courtroom after the hearing, Shelley’s grandfather, Norman Black, read a statement to the media.
“I’d like to say that we appreciate all involved in helping to bring justice to our Lizzy," Black said. "We appreciate the diligence of the courts and all the people that are working on the case for us, including the prosecuting attorneys in the case. We appreciate everything that everybody is doing on our behalf for the family. Of course it’s a hard process to go through."
Black went on: "Again, we’re appreciative of all the support that we are getting from this community. I can not say enough about the Cache County community and all that they have done for our family. It’s been wonderful.”
Whipple’s attorneys declined to comment, and Cache County Attorney James Swink, the lead prosecutor on the case, was not made available for questions. It remained uncertain whether the case will go to trial or end in a plea agreement.
Whipple is next due in court on August 13th.