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Co-defendant tells police she witnessed boyfriend sexually assault Kamille McKinney

Kamille McKinney's body was discovered ten days after she disappeared.  Police said her remains were left in a dumpster. (
Kamille McKinney's body was discovered ten days after she disappeared. Police said her remains were left in a dumpster. (
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Warning: Some readers may find the information in this article disturbing.

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBMA) -- The co-defendant in the murder case of Kamille McKinney told police she witnessed her boyfriend, Patrick Stallworth sexually assault the three-year-old girl the night she was kidnapped, according to testimony during a preliminary hearing Friday.

Attorneys for both Brown and Stallworth have tried to point fingers at the other person for McKinney's death in hearings held this week.

Brown denied any knowledge of what happened to McKinney until she was interviewed for a fourth time by police according to testimony by Birmingham Police Detective Johnathan Ross. Ross noted the interview occurred after Stallworth was released on bond for child pornography charges during the course of the investigation.

Ross said Brown admitted to police she was with Stallworth in the Tom Brown Village on October 12th but said she claimed she did not see McKinney until the couple stopped at a Jet Pep gas station after leaving the public housing complex. No explanation was given for how the child ended up in the SUV. Ross testified surveillance video from the gas station showed Brown calmly walking in and out of the gas station to buy a bottle of lemonade.

Brown went on to tell police Stallworth brought McKinney with them to their Center Point apartment Ross said. She told police she woke up in the middle of the night to witness Stallworth forcing the three-year-old to perform oral sex on him.

Ross, a 28-year veteran of the Birmingham Police Department, became visibly upset as he recounted the graphic details of the sexual assault Brown described to police. Jefferson County Circuit Judge Clyde Jones paused the proceedings to allow members of the audience to leave. Both of McKinney's parents were present in the courtroom for the entire hearing.

Brown admitted to taking ice - a street-name for methamphetamine and Trazodone, an anti-depressant which can be used to make someone drowsy. Both drugs were also found in McKinney's autopsy report. McKinney was killed by asphyxiation by suffocation according the report.

Ross said she also told police her boyfriend put the girl's body in a dumpster near their apartment complex. Testimony on Friday revealed the FBI had organized a trash team while McKinney was still missing. McKinney was discovered in a trash dump ten days after her disappearance.

Brown's statements to police contradicted Tuesday's testimony of what Stallworth told police after McKinney's body was found. He told police he first saw McKinney when he returned to the couple's apartment. Stallworth said it was Brown sitting next to the three-year-old watching television. Brown said, “I want to keep her," Stallworth said after pointing out the girl wasn't her child. He said Brown killed McKinney while he stepped outside to smoke a cigarette.

Derick Brown's public defender argued Brown should not be charged with capital murder, a charge making her eligible for the death penalty, because they had not proven she had acted with 'specific intent' to kill McKinney. Her attorney pointed out the autopsy report did not show forensic evidence from Brown on McKinney's body. He also claimed two inmates in the Jefferson County Jail approached police to say Stallworth admitted while in jail to killing McKinney.

"We're not here to talk about if Ms. Brown is a good person. That would be a very short conversation," the attorney said.

Brown was charged with kidnapping in July 2018 after police say she removed her children at gunpoint from a relatives house before leading police on a chase in Jefferson County. Brown did not have legal custody of her children at the time.

Judge Jones did not agree with the defense's argument. "This defendant did not come forward when this child became missing," Jones said, "Which she could have easily done."

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Jones ordered the capital murder cases against both to be sent to a grand jury for possible indictment.

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