An Etowah County woman accused of killing her granddaughter by forcing her to run for hours as a punishment appeared in court on Monday.
Judge William Ogletree is considering several requests from lawyers as they prepare for the Sept. 22 trial of Joyce Garrard.
Among the motions is a defense request to prevent lawyers from eliminating potential jurors who oppose capital punishment.
Ogletree said on Monday that he will call two panels, each made up of 365 potential jurors, and that they will not be sequestered during the trial.
The defense has also asked that the word "guilty" not be used in the penalty phase if Garrard is convicted. Ogletree has issued a gag order in the case, so neither side is allowed to speak with the media.
Ogletree is also overseeing the process as prosecutors and defense lawyers share evidence before the trial.
Garrard is charged with capital murder in the 2012 death of her 9-year-old granddaughter, Savannah Hardin. She is being held without bond in the Etowah County Jail. Jessican Hardin, Savannah Hardin's stepmother, is charged with felony murder in the child's death. Hardin is currently out on a $150,000 bond.
Prosecutors say Garrard made the nine-year-old girl run for three hours as punishment for a lie about eating a candy bar on Feb. 17, 2012. The child collapsed and died three days later at a hospital. Hardin is accused of not intervening.
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