Prosecutors played surveillance videos Monday during the first day of a kidnapping trial to try and link a 15-year-old girl to the abduction of an elderly Kennewick woman late last year.
The videos appeared to show KateLynn Kenfield and two other teen suspects, Dyllan K. Martin and Billy J Underwood, at an Oregon Walmart shortly before the victim escaped from the car trunk in the parking lot and then enter the store for help.
The three teens are accused of abducting Hazel Abel, 87, who is Martin’s great grandmother, from her home Nov. 2 and driving the woman to Oregon. Abel eventually escaped with her dog at the Wood Village, Ore., store after being in the trunk for about six hours.
Police and prosecutors allege there were discussions among the teens to kill Abel and use her car to run away.
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Kenfield, who was 14 at the time of abduction, is the first of the suspects to go on trial. She has been charged in juvenile court with first-degree kidnapping, residential burglary and theft of a vehicle. Martin, 16, and Underwood, 15, are charged as adults.
The teens stopped at Walmart to shop and fled after realizing Abel had escaped, according to court documents. They were arrested a short time later by Oregon authorities.
Kenfield’s case is being heard in Benton County Superior Court and will be decided by Judge Cameron Mitchell. She is being represented by attorneys Scott Johnson and Deric Orr.
The trial is expected to wrap up by the end of the week. The defense has maintained Kenfield was not as much a willing participant as investigators and prosecutors have portrayed.
Johnson declined to give an opening statement Monday.
Prosecutors say Abel was getting ready to watch her favorite TV show the night she was kidnapped. Dirt was thrown in her face and her hands were tied before she was put into the trunk with her dog.
Abel managed to escape the ordeal without any serious injuries.
The trial resumes Tuesday when law enforcement officers from Oregon are expected to testify.