SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The parents of an 8-year-old Central California girl who was stabbed to death in her home believed she was fine when they made a 911 call to authorities from another location.
A recording released Tuesday indicates a woman called 911 after getting a call about a mystery intruder from the girl's 12-year-old brother, who was arrested Saturday in connection with the killing.
The caller, who said she was the girl's mother, said the children, including Leila Fowler, were OK. She was not at home at the time.
"My children are at home alone and a man just ran out of our house. My older son was in the bathroom and my daughter started screaming. He came out and a man was in the house," the panicked caller says in the call made April 27. "They said they're OK."
She added, "My daughter is freaking out right now."
In fact, Leila Fowler was dying of stab wounds.
Her brother told police he scared off an intruder. For two weeks, Calaveras County sheriff's investigators searched door to door for witnesses and evidence.
The boy's attorney told The Associated Press that the youngster might have lied about seeing a long-haired man fleeing the scene, but that doesn't make the boy the killer.
Attorney Mark Reichel, who met with the boy Tuesday, said his client might have made up a "macho" story about scaring away the intruder because he was scared.
Reichel said he and his law partner Steve Plesser had not yet seen the evidence against their young client, which is in the hands of the Calaveras County district attorney's office, but Tuesday evening Reichel told KTVU-TV that his client has been charged with second degree murder and a special allegation for use of a dangerous weapon
The boy is due to appear in juvenile court Wednesday.
Reichel had said earlier Tuesday that after visiting with the boy, he and Plesser met with the family and toured the hillside home where the stabbing took place. Reichel declined to say what they spoke about.