April trial set for accused murderer

PORT ANGELES — A Sequim woman accused of killing the daughter of a deceased man for whom she had been a caregiver is tentatively set to begin a four- to five-week trial on April 22 in Clallam County Superior Court.

A status hearing is set for 9 a.m. March 5.

Aline Jones, 44, remained in the Clallam County jail Tuesday in lieu of $500,000 on a single charge of second-degree murder. She pleaded not guilty Nov. 14 in Clallam County Superior Court to all seven charges filed against her on Nov. 1, two felonies and five gross misdemeanors.

The trial originally was set to begin Jan. 8 but was reset to April 22 on Dec. 19.

The case has been complicated by the need for a translator who not only translates Portuguese but also has done so in criminal court proceedings.

A Dec. 19 letter from Clallam County Superior Court Judge Simon Barnhart to Chief Criminal Deputy Michele Devlin of the Clallam County prosecuting attorney’s office and defense attorney John Hayden noted Hayden’s concerns regarding the Portuguese interpreter provided for Jones.

Hayden expressed a lack of confidence that the interpreter fully understood the discussion taking place, according to the letter. Barnhart wrote that Hayden may take up that issue as trial approaches.

The trial also has been complicated by the what Barnhart characterized in a Nov. 14 hearing as “the complexity of the case.”

The body of Susan M. Ferrel, 65, of Nevada was found Oct. 26 at a Diamond Point home that belonged to her late father, Raymond Rhodes, according to a press release from the Clallam County Sheriff’s Office.

Jones had worked as a caretaker for Rhodes, who died Oct. 14 at the age of 93, and continued living in the home after he died, according to the motion for determination of probable cause.

Jones was charged Nov. 1 in Clallam County Superior Court with second-degree murder with a deadly weapon enhancement and motor vehicle theft, both felonies.

She also was charged with making false or misleading statements to a public servant, tampering with physical evidence — murder weapon, tampering with physical evidence — documents, tampering with physical evidence — clothing, and removal or concealment of body, all gross misdemeanors.

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Reporter Brian Gawley can be reached at brian.gawley@peninsuladailynews.com.

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