Alex Whipple, accused killer of his 5-year-old niece in Logan, appears before judge

The judge set a preliminary hearing for Whipple for Aug. 13. The preliminary hearing will determine whether there is enough evidence of guilt to continue to trial.

And police have said the DNA evidence strongly links Whipple to the scene of Lizzy’s death, about five doors away from her house, where Whipple had been staying the night the child disappeared.

Elizabeth Jessica Shelley, 5, disappeared on Saturday, May 25, 2019, from her home in Logan. Photo: Logan Police Department

Whipple faces charges of:

  • Aggravated murder, a first-degree felony
  • Rape of a child, a first-degree felony
  • Sodomy of a child, a first-degree felony
  • Child kidnapping, a first-degree felony
  • Two counts of obstruction of justice, a first-degree felony
  • Abuse or desecration of a dead human body, a third-degree felony

He also faces lesser charges related to resisting arrest when law enforcement officials tried to take him into custody on May 25 near Hyrum, about 10 miles from the crime scene.

The same day the murder and other first-degree felony charges were filed, Whipple’s attorney made a deal with Cache County prosecutors to take the death penalty off the table if Whipple revealed the location of Lizzy’s body.

Her remains were found in an overgrown field near her mother’s home, under a pile of debris. The location already had been searched.

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