Homicide charges coming soon in Alexis Rasmussen case

Dec 1 2011 - 12:19am

OGDEN -- Homicide charges are expected soon against Eric and Dea Millerberg in the death of Alexis Rasmussen, Dea Millerberg's attorney said Wednesday.

"aa'Soon' is all we're hearing," public defender Mike Bouwhuis said, speaking to reporters after a hearing for Dea Millerberg concluded in 2nd District Court.

He said his client remains anxious about the course of the homicide investigation by North Ogden police assisted by the homicide task force supervised by the Weber County Attorney's Office.

"She's always been worried about the homicide investigation ... We have talked about what happened that night. But I can't disclose any of that."

Rasmussen was baby-sitting at the Millerbergs' North Ogden home Sept. 10, the night she was last seen. An Oct. 9 search of the Millerberg home found evidence implicating the couple in the girl's death, and the affidavits for the warrant detailed damning statements from associates of the couple.

Prosecutors have advised him, Bouwhuis said, that charges will be filed once the state Medical Examiner's report is completed on the exact cause of death.

"They've been saying that for awhile now," he said. "It's been almost six weeks."

The body of Rasmussen, a 16-year-old Weber High School student, was found Oct. 18 in a remote area of Morgan County near the small town of Taggart.

Eric Millerberg has since been sent to prison on unrelated parole violations stemming from drug use. Dea Millerberg is held in Weber County Jail in lieu of $15,000 bail on drug charges and one count of child endangerment for traces of methamphetamine found in testing of her infant daughter's hair.

Both were arrested in the days just before the search warrant was served Oct. 9.

The drug screens of the hair follicles of the Millerberg's two daughters, the 11-month-old infant fathered by Eric and a 6-year-old daughter from her previous marriage, were conducted just after she was arrested Oct. 4 on a prescription drug charge.

Meth was found in the infant's hair, but the testing was negative for the older girl, Bouwhuis said Wednesday. The resulting child endangerment charge was filed Nov. 15.

On Wednesday, 2nd District Judge W. Brent West scheduled a Dec. 21 preliminary hearing for Millerberg on the prescription drug charges. She waived a preliminary hearing on the child endangerment charges, setting a pretrial conference on that case for the same date, Dec. 21.

Bouwhuis had Millerberg sign an authorization in open court to allow him to share confidential information with a relative of hers about the proceedings against her.

After the hearing Bouwhuis said the authorization was necessary only to advise the relative, whom he wouldn't identify, about the case, not to assist in the defense.

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