Woman to face trial in mom's death in Michigan - FOX 10 News | fox10phoenix.com

Woman to face trial in mom's death in Michigan

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(Credit: SCCSO) Kelly Rhodes (Credit: SCCSO) Kelly Rhodes

A woman who left the body of her 89-year-old mother outside of a Michigan thrift store will stand trial for murder.

A judge in St. Clair County said there's enough evidence to show that Kelly Rhodes contributed to the death of Mary Grenia who was found outside a Goodwill Industries store in Port Huron Township in March. The 49-year old is charged with an open count of murder, and it will be up to a jury to decide whether it is first-degree or second-degree murder if she is convicted.

Rhodes and Grenia lived together in Oregon, but made plans to move to Canada to live with an old acquaintance, according to defense attorney Sharon Parrish. They tried to enter Ontario, Canada with a truck full of possessions but were denied and Rhodes didn't have a backup plan, Parrish said.

Grenia died inside the truck at a truck stop and her covered body was later found outside the thrift store. An autopsy revealed heart and lung disease but no sign of trauma. 

In releasing his decision on Tuesday, St. Clair County District Judge John Monaghan said he was influenced by some key points, including that Rhodes allegedly told another inmate that she had been out of money and had denied food to her mother before she died.

Monaghan said leaving the body outside the store was a "callous" act that signaled a "consciousness of guilt."

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