Walden’s 3-month-old daughter, Rae’Anna, was injured while in her care Oct. 23 and was pronounced dead five days later at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, according to prosecutors.
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During the brief arraignment in Butler County Common Pleas Court, Judge Charles Pater appointed a public defender to represent Walden and entered a not guilty plea on her behalf to both charges.
Walden cried during the entire hearing. The bailiff handed tissues to her as she stood alone at the podium. She was wearing a lime green Butler County Jail uniform that is typically reserved for inmates on suicide watch.
Seated in the courtroom’s front row were family members of the baby’s father and Walden’s grandmother. All declined comment.
Assistant Prosecutor Kelly Heile requested a significant bond for Walden
“There are very serious charges,” Heile said. “The charges arise out of drug usage surrounding the care of her her child.”
Both Heile and the judge noted there was a significant criminal history of drug usage by Walden. She was charged with aggravated possession of drugs in December and was being held in the Hamilton County Jail when the Butler County indictment was returned.
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Walden told Pater if she was released on bond, “I plan to get mental health treatment because I really need it.”
She is scheduled to be back in court Tuesday for a pre-trial hearing.