Babysitter accused in child's death out on bond - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Babysitter accused in child's death out on bond

Posted: Updated:

By Stacy Jacobson
sjacobson@abcnews4.com

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- Alicia Stepp has been released from jail, just hours after a circuit judge lowered her bond Friday afternoon.

The babysitter called 911 on July 2, 2012. She said she found Ginny Hughes, the 2-year-old, unresponsive.

After police investigated, coroner Rae Wooten held an inquest. It determined Stepp was responsible for Ginny's death.

Wooten also set Stepp's bond at $100,000. Stepp's lawyer David Aylor said Wooten went too far. 

"There are some legal questions involved in that we were concerned about from the get go," Aylor said.

A circuit court judge must set bond for a charge that carries a potential life sentence, Aylor said. A circuit court judge did set her bond at $50,000 Friday.

Last week, Wooten issued a statement that she followed state law.

"There's no risk of flight with Miss Stepp and she's not a danger to the community. So we felt like it was appropriate. It was such a relief to get the actual bond set by the person it should be set by," Aylor said.

He said jail has been hard on his client. Stepp has a preliminary hearing Tuesday. Aylor said they hope the case doesn't go to trial.

The coroner released the following statement:

"Today's hearing was a routine and appropriate step in the criminal justice process, and I look forward to cooperating with the various agencies involved as the case moves forward. Again, to be clear, my role as Coroner is to rule on the manner of death in accordance with state law, not guilt or innocence."

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