CANNON BEACH, Ore. (KOIN 6) — Jessica Smith, accused of killing her 2-year-old daughter and critically wounding her teenage daughter at a Cannon Beach resort, made her first court appearance to face murder charges.
Smith, 40, faces charges of aggravated murder and attempted aggravated murder. She appeared at times detached and even smiled during a video arraignment in Clatsop County Circuit Court and is being held without bail.
During her appearance, Smith’s defense attorney, William David Falls, asked the court to restrict the Grand Jury’s access to information on Smith’s medical and mental health background but would not say why.
“Because we try things in the courtroom not in the media. That’s the way things should be done,” he said.
If convicted of aggravated murder, Smith could receive the death penalty.
Isabella Smith, 2, was found dead and her 13-year-old sister, Alana Smith, was found critically wounded by the housekeeping staff at the Surfsand Resort in Cannon Beach on Friday.
The housekeepers found them around 9:45 a.m., Clatsop County officials said in a release, and no adults were in the room.
The teen was airlifted to a Portland area hospital for treatment of critical cuts. Authorities said she is in stable condition and in protective custody.
Jessica Smith was arrested Sunday when the US Coast Guard Sector Columbia River spotted her on a logging road in a heavily forested area 15 miles from Cannon Beach around 5:30 p.m.
“They flew they think four hours of missions on Saturday, and this was frankly a Hail Mary pass on Sunday to see if we could do one last run,” said Clatsop County District Attorney Josh Marquis.
The children’s father, Greg Smith, was ruled out as a suspect in the crime. Court records from Washington state showed that the couple was going through a divorce.
Those documents also showed that Jessica Smith filed for a restraining order and order of protection from Greg Smith, claiming “daily emotional abuse” and an environment that was “life-threatening, traumatizing and unsafe.”
Jessica Smith’s next court appearance is scheduled for August 12.