CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A local case that involved charges of kidnapping, murder and child neglect will be featured on national TV starting today.
The trial of Ethan Chic-Colbert, the Charleston man convicted in the death of his girlfriend's 11-year-old son, will be aired on truTV.
Authorities said Chic-Colbert was viciously beating Lynitrah Woodson along Interstate 64 when her son, Jahlil Clements, tried to flag down help for his mother. Jahlil was struck and killed by a vehicle.
Television crews were in Kanawha Circuit Judge Duke Bloom's courtroom for the July trial, which ended with a guilty verdict on the child neglect charges for the 22-year-old.
The trial will be broadcast on truTV's "In Session," which shows courtroom trials in their entirety. It will air 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today and will continue through Nov. 21. The show does not air on weekends.
"The death of 11-year-old Jahlil Clements is a terrible tragedy for his family," Scott Tufts, executive producer for the show, said in an email. "Our audience will be intrigued with how the justice system handles cases like this."
Chic-Colbert initially was indicted on charges of murder in commission of a felony, kidnapping and several counts of child neglect.
The murder charge was stricken when Bloom dismissed the kidnapping charges.
The jury found Chic-Colbert, who had a long history of domestic violence-related arrests, guilty on child neglect charges. He is currently serving a six- to 30-year sentence.
Students at Malden Elementary, where Jahlil attended school, considered him a "big brother," Malden Principal Julie Sayre said in previous interviews. He mentored the younger students and was very respectful to his teachers. She said he loved playing sports and she often saw him on the playground after school.
"He was an all-around good kid," Sayre said.
The show also will feature interviews with key people involved in the trial. Kanawha Prosecutor Mark Plants and assistant prosecutors Dan Holstein and Tara Salango flew to Atlanta Wednesday to appear on the show.
The boy's mother also will appear on the show Thursday and Friday.
Plants said by telephone Wednesday that he was aware the trial was being taped for national broadcast but did not know he and the other prosecutors would be invited for interviews.