BELTON — Capital murder suspect Maya Maxwell is ready to go to trial, her attorney said Tuesday during a livestream hearing.
Maxwell — charged with capital murder of multiple persons and tampering with evidence in the Jan. 3, 2019, slayings of Temple residents Jenna Scott and Michael Swearingin — wants a trial after spending nearly two years in jail, her attorney Wade Faulkner said.
Faulkner asked for the hearing but it wasn’t on the court docket Monday. Faulkner said the hearing was put on the livestream docket Tuesday morning.
“We’re just trying to make sure the word gets out that we’re ready for trial and pushing for trial,” Faulkner said. “As for Maxwell, she’s doing as well as someone who has been in custody for two years can be doing. She’s suffered the mental and physical effects of being in jail for two years. She’s ready for her day in court and we’re pushing the judge today to set a date and some deadlines for the government.”
Faulkner pointed out the lack of jury hearings in Bell County since March and said he and his client are ready to proceed. He said he would like her trial “moved from the back burner to the front-burner status.”
He explained to Bell County 426th District Court Judge Steve Duskie that trials have been held in other Texas counties because they have taken the necessary steps to make them happen.
Bell County First Assistant District Attorney Stephanie Newell said a March 2021 date had been set for Maxwell, but there was no certainty it would be held because of the state’s emergency orders.
“Bell County will follow those emergency orders,” Newell said.
Faulkner asked the court to get the judges, people and steps in place to conduct Maxwell’s jury trial.
The question asked of both attorneys was if everything was ready for the March 1 trial date.
Copies amounts of data had just been dumped, Newell said.
“We’re still getting data dumps two years later,” Faulkner said.
Newell explained the delays in some of the evidence resulted from a slowed process at the FBI in Quantico, Va. She said evidence in the case can’t be separated for Maxwell and Cedric Marks, also charged with capital murder in the two slayings.
Faulkner asked Duskie to revisit his motion to reduce Maxwell’s $725,000 bond because his client deserved to be free on bond. Duskie said he would not rule on the bond reduction motion because it wasn’t in Tuesday’s motion.
“I do understand where you are coming from,” Duskie told Faulkner. “I will look to see what steps are needed to take on trials.”
Maxwell, who was on the livestream hearing, appeared different that her jail photo. Her dark, short hair has grown down to her shoulders, is now a light brown color and wavy.
Maxwell got married July 12 by proxy, but her last name hasn’t changed. In an August hearing, her husband was referred to as John Doe.
Duskie told Faulkner and Newell to set discovery hearings if they are needed.