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Judge sets trial date for West Virginia woman accused in son's drowning

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By Bobby Kerlik
Monday, July 1, 2013, 6:09 p.m.

A West Virginia woman accused of drowning her toddler son in the bathtub of a Green Tree motel will face trial Sept. 16, an Allegheny County judge ruled Monday.

The new trial date came after Common Pleas Judge Jeffrey A. Manning ruled that prosecutors could use statements that Sharon Flanagan made to police about what happened to her 2-year-old son, Steven Flanagan.

Defense attorney Blaine Jones said she was in custody and asked for an attorney, but detectives continued questioning her anyway. Flanagan made an audio recording of the interview.

The judge ruled that she was not in custody when she spoke to police and that her statements could be used at trial.

Flanagan, 34, of Inwood, faces nine charges stemming from the July 1, 2012, incident at the Best Western Parkway Center Inn. The boy died five days later at Children's Hospital in Lawrenceville.

Jones said Flanagan “did not intentionally or unintentionally harm her child in anyway.”

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