An Oklahoma just has placed a gag order in the murder case of a 4-year-old, allegedly beaten and killed by one of her caregivers.
Murder suspect Ivon Adams arrived in Caddo County Thursday after he was extradited from Arizona on charges connected to Athena Brownfield’s death.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Alysia Adams was arrested on Thursday in Oklahoma, and Ivon Adams was arrested later that day in Phoenix. Both were charged with child neglect, but Ivon Adams was also charged with “child homicide.”
On Thursday, a Caddo County judge set a gag order on the case, which prevents law enforcement and attorney from speaking publicly about the case.
Speaking with ABC 5, lawyer Ed Blau (Blau Law firm) said that judges will issue gag orders if information about the case could jeopardize the suspect’s right to a fair trial.
“Gag orders are exceedingly rare, and they generally only occur in the most high profile of cases,” attorney Ed Blau, with the Blau Law Firm, said. “Two examples are the Oklahoma City bombing and the Daniel Holtzclaw case.”
Athena’s case is considered high-profile since it’s getting international coverage, as well as being the center of attention on multiple social media platforms.
Court documents released prior to the gag order indicate that Alysia Adams told investigators that Ivon beat Athena to death at about midnight on December 25.
After the beating, the little girl “was not moving and her eyes were barely open,” an affidavit says. Ivon “then laid her on the ground and punched her at least three more times in the chest.” She “never moved after that,” Alysia told the investigators.
Ivon then took the girl and buried her “near a fence line that was next to their old residence in Rush Springs,” about 15 miles away from Cyril, the affidavit says.
Alysia told investigators that Ivon left with the girl’s body at about 1 a.m. on December 26, then returned and told her he’d marked the grave, on property in Rush Springs he once owned, with a broken branch.
Ivon Adams waived his extradition, saying he wanted to get back to Oklahoma “and fight this.”
Alysia Adams, meanwhile, is jailed in Caddo County, Oklahoma. She was formally charged on Tuesday with two counts of child neglect — one for failure to supervise the 5-year-old and the other for failure to protect Athena from her husband.
She’s been given a $500,000 bond with restrictions if it’s posted, according to KOCO.
The OSBI has said the girls and the Adamses are related, but they have not described that relationship. The affidavit said that the girls’ biological mother left the children with the couple 1 1/2 to 2 years ago.
Both the children’s biological parents have been cooperating, the OSBI said.
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[Featured image: L-R, Ivon Adams/Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, Athena Brownfield/Cyril Police Department, Alysia Adams/Caddo County Sheriff’s Offfice]
Additional reporting by KC Wildmoon