Charlie Bothuell IV and his wife Monique Dillard-Bothuell in Wayne County Circuit Court on Friday. (David Coates / The Detroit News)
Detroit— Probation violation charges were dropped on Friday against the stepmother of a 12-year-old boy found hiding in the basement of his family’s east side home 11 days after his father reported him missing.
Charges against Monique Dillard-Bothuell were dismissed by Wayne County Circuit Judge Gregory Bill following a court hearing that cited lack of evidence. At issue was whether she had violated the terms of her probation when police found a gun in her townhouse while searching for the youngster.
Bill also granted Dillard-Bothuell’s attorney requests to have her tether removed. Dillard-Bothuell is on probation from a 2013 weapons charge.
Probation officer LaTanya Bradford testified that under the terms of Dillard-Bothuell’s probation, she is not to possess a gun or be around anyone else in possession of a firearm during a probationary period.
Dillard-Bothuell’s attorney Mark Magidson said the gun was found in the home “in pieces.” He said following the court hearing that the gun did not belong to Dillard-Bothuell.
“She’s just happy to be able to visit her two kids,” said Magidson who said it had become difficult because of the tether. The attorney added that Dillard-Bothuell did not violate her probation because she wasn’t aware that the gun was in the house.
Charlie Bothuell V was found by police June 25 hungry and shivering in the basement of his family’s home on Nicolet Place in Lafayette Park after being missing for 11 days. He alleges he was forced in the basement by Dillard-Bothuell following an argument over his exercise routine. He said his stepmother told him to “shut up, stay quiet, and don’t say anything no matter what you hear!” during his time in the basement.
The couple reported the boy missing to Detroit police.
The stepmother was accompanied to court Friday by her husband, Charlie Bothuell IV. The couple left the courthouse without commenting to reporters on the probation violations case or the Department of Human Services’ petition to terminate their parental rights on allegations of abuse or neglect of 12-year-old Charlie. A hearing on that case continues Thursday.
Charlie has been placed with his mother while the couple’s other children, a 4-year-old boy and 11-month-old girl, have been placed with their maternal grandmother.
The parents have supervised visitation rights.
The couple also refused to comment on allegations by the 12-year-old that he was beaten by his father, forced into extreme exercise regimens by his dad and threatened by Dillard-Bothuell.