A woman accused of a brutal Down East slaying will get access to cellphone data she maintains will provide her an alibi.
Superior Court Justice Robert Murray ruled Wednesday that an IT expert for Kailie Brackett, 39, of Perry can have access to her seized cellphone at the state crime lab, according to the Portland Press Herald.
Brackett, who has been charged with murder along with 40-year-old Donnell Dana of Perry in the death of Kimberly Neptune, maintains she dropped her child off at Dana’s mother’s house and then was at her own home the night of the slaying, the Press Herald reported.
On April 21, 2022, a relative of Neptune, 43, found Neptune’s body inside her Thunder Road home in Pleasant Point. Neptune’s body had been covered, and a subsequent autopsy determined she had been stabbed and cut nearly 500 times on her legs, stomach, neck and head.
Brackett and Dana have pleaded not guilty. The Press Herald reported they face a December trial.
Dana lived with Neptune briefly and later shared a child with Brackett, according to the Portland newspaper.
Brackett’s attorney, David Bate, accused the state of holding his client’s phone “ransom,” refusing to provide access unless she provides authorities with its password. In a court filing, Bate argued surrendering the password in exchange for potentially exonerating information would “sacrifice her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination,” according to the Press Herald.
Without the ability to unlock the phone, the state has been unable to investigate its contents, the newspaper reported.
Witnesses told investigators that in the days before the killing, Brackett had publicly accused Neptune of stealing money. On the day they allegedly went to Neptune’s apartment, Brackett and Dana had planned to rob Neptune of 300 Xanax pills and money, the police affidavit showed.
Brackett was identified as a suspect after she posted photos online of herself wearing clothing similar to a suspect seen on a neighbor’s security camera near where Neptune lived on Thunder Road.
A witness told police that Brackett told her that it was meant to be a drug robbery in a conversation the day after the killing. Brackett told the witness she and Neptune were “seeing each other.” She called Neptune on April 20 to arrange a night together at Neptune’s apartment and arranged for a babysitter, the witness said.
Brackett showed up at Neptune’s apartment with Dana, the witness told police, but Neptune objected to his being there. Dana then allegedly attacked Neptune. While Dana was fighting with Neptune, Brackett allegedly grabbed items in the apartment including jewelry, money and Xanax, police said.
The witness told police that Brackett allegedly told her “Kim put up a good fight.” She also stabbed Neptune, according to the witness.
BDN writer Bill Trotter contributed to this report.