Attorneys argue timing of Miranda rights for woman charged in Sodus double-homicide

Charlene Childers March 2019.jpg
Charlene Childers is one of three people charged in connection to the murders of Joshua Niles and Amber Washburn. (WHAM photo))

Lyons, N.Y. (WHAM) - Attorneys gathered in court Tuesday for a hearing about one of the suspects accused in the murder of a Sodus couple last fall.

Charlene Childers is one of three people charged in connection to the murders of Joshua Niles and Amber Washburn.

Childers was the mother of two of Niles' children; those children were living with Niles and Washburn in Sodus.

On October 22, Childers' husband, Timothy Dean, allegedly shot Niles and Washburn dead. Both are charged with murder.

During the hearing in Wayne County Court on Tuesday, attorneys went over the accounts of witnesses and law enforcement on the day Childers became a suspect in the murder investigation.

Approximately one week after the murders, investigators said Childers was brought into the Wayne County Sheriff's Office for questioning. At one point during the interview, one detective said Childers revealed that she was involved in renting a car that was allegedly used as part of the murder plot. It was at that point, the detective said, that he realized Childers could be involved in the murders.

Charges filed against Childers, Dean, and a third man - Bron Bohlar - allege that Dean conspired with Childers and Bohlar to plan the murders, then drove up from Texas where he and Childers lived at the time to Sodus using a rental car that Bohlar paid for.

Bohlar later pleaded guilty to conspiracy and is scheduled to be sentenced in mid-June.

Attorneys argued in court Tuesday over whether Childers was read her Miranda rights at the appropriate time.

"The purpose of this hearing is to flush out if the officer who did the hearing did it properly," said Rome Canzano, Childers' defense attorney. "If she was in custody and not provided her Miranda then there may be a problem with what she said and if it can be used in the direct case against her."

"The nice thing out here in Wayne County is that we video and audio record every single interview so the court has a verbatim resuscitation of what happened that night at the station with Ms. Childers to review," Wayne County Assistant District Attorney Christine Callanan said. "They brought her in; she came in voluntarily and cooperated with the investigation. During the course of the interview when information that was provided was inconsistent with her statement, they Mirandized her, advised her of her rights. She then waive those understanding them and continued to speak with them about the investigation.”

Childers is scheduled to return to court on April 11. The next court appearance for Dean is scheduled for Friday.