Shannel Mosely's 28-year-old sister, Schaqual, told the jury she lied about leaving New Orleans on December 31 to come to Houston to watch her six children. Schaqual said she couldn't afford to buy a bus ticket to Houston from New Orleans, but she lied because she didn't want her sister to change her plans.
Schaqual began to sob, as did Mosely, who was so overwhelmed by what she heard that she could no longer maintain her composure.
"She came all the way to Houston while her sister was in jail," said Mosely's attorney, Vivian King. "She talked to a prosecutor in this court with bailiffs. She had a good faith belief that she would be arrested if she told the truth, so she lied."
Earlier in the day, Shanell took the stand in her own defense. She testified that on January 6, the 35-year-old found out her six children, ranging in age from 9 to 1, were in CPS custody, yet she didn't return home to Houston until January 28, 22 days later.
Mosely, who was to remain in Africa for six weeks, testified she did not have the money to change her ticket and had to beg family members for it.
When asked if she knew she was going to be arrested upon her arrival in Houston, she answered 'Yes,' saying, "I was crying. I was crying on the plane home."
"If you had known Schaqual wasn't coming, would you have taken the trip?" asked the defense.
"No," answered Mosely.
"Ms. Mosely loves her sister, Schaqual, and obviously she would be disappointed because her sister did not show up as anticipated," said King.
There's not an issue of perjury, because this is the first time Schaqual testified under oath. She's expected back on the stand Monday.
Mosely is charged with two counts of child endangerment. Prosecutors argue that Mosely abandoned her six children, leaving them in conditions so deplorable that they weren't suitable for anyone.
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