Still no plea for Stephanie Sloop

Friday , July 04, 2014 - 6:04 AM

Missing Boy Utah

Stephanie Sloop looks at her defense attorney during a status conference hearing Friday, Dec. 14,...

By LORETTA PARK Standard-Examiner staff

FARMINGTON --- A three-day preliminary hearing is set for the woman accused of killing her 4-year-old son four years ago.

Judge Thomas L. Kay set Nov. 17 through Nov. 19 on Thursday in 2nd Distric Court for the preliminary hearing for Stephanie Sloop, 31, of Layton. 

Another status conference is scheduled for Sept. 4. 

Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings declined to make any comments after Thursday’s hearing. Mary Corporon, Sloop’s defense attorney, also declined to comment.

Sloop, who looked distressed and wearing a red jail jump suit,  is charged with aggravated murder, second-degree felony child abuse, second-degree felony obstruction of justice and third-degree felony abuse or desecration of a body. The charges stem from the death of her son, Ethan Stacy, on May 8, 2010.

Sloop is charged with aggravated murder under both sections of the child abuse law, which includes Shelby’s Law, which did not exist before 2007.

The murder charge carries a possible death sentence if she is convicted. Her husband, Nathanael Warren Sloop, was also charged in the boy’s death. He entered a guilty plea to aggravated murder, but mentally ill, on  Feb. 4 and was sentenced to 25 years to life in the Utah State Prison.

Stephanie Sloop has yet to enter any type of plea. Her case has not yet gone to a preliminary hearing.

Prosecutors have 60 days following a felony arraignment hearing to file their intent to seek the death penalty.

Investigators found the young boy’s disfigured body buried near Powder Mountain on May 11, 2010.

Police said Stephanie Sloop called 911 on May 10, 2010 close to midnight to report her son had left her Layton apartment.

According to the probable cause statement, she “told police officers and dispatch that Ethan had done this over the past four nights.”

After an extensive search, police learned the little boy had not left the apartment, but the Sloops had found him dead in his room, according to the document.

Stephanie Sloop admitted to police that Nathan Sloop had gotten angry with Ethan and took him in his bedroom, where she could hear “Nate slapping Ethan in the bedroom,” according to the document.

When she went into the bedroom, she found “Ethan badly beaten about the head area,” and she knew he needed medical attention, but never got it, according to the document.

She told police her son was ill over the next several days, and at one point she and Nathan Sloop forced the boy to drink two 16-ounce bottles of water, a 16-ounce bottle of Kool-Aid and a glass of orange juice, according to the document.

Stephanie Sloop also told police that the boy was burned in the bathtub but she also did not seek medical attention for him. Several more days passed, and Ethan was still sick.

In the early morning hours of May 9, 2010, the couple realized Ethan had died, according to the documents.

They took the boy’s body to a place near Powder Mountain and buried him there, police said.

Stephanie Sloop had gone to two convenience stores in the area, according to the probable cause statement. At one store, she bought two cans of lighter fluid and at another store she bought two slush drinks.

She told officers the lighter fluid was for Nathan Sloop, “because he wanted to burn the body,” according to the probable cause statement.

Contact reporter Loretta Park at 801-625-4252 or lpark@standard.net. Follow her on Twitter at @LorettaParkSE. Like her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/SELorettaPark.

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