Baby Kate murder case ruling: Sean Phillips can stand trial

Posted at 11:34 AM, Mar 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-09 11:34:43-05

LUDINGTON, Mich.–A ruling just released by the Michigan Supreme Court has paved the way for the murder case against Sean Phillips–the father of “Baby Kate”–to go forward.

The court released a one-sentence order Tuesday, stating that it had denied Phillips’ appeal of an earlier decision from the Michigan Court of Appeals that allowed the murder case to proceed.

The case is one of the most high profile in recent history in West Michigan. Baby Kate disappeared in June 2011 in Ludington and her body has never been found. Phillips is currently serving a 10 to 15 year prison sentence for unlawful imprisonment in connection with the child’s disappearance.

In October 2013, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette said, “We have evidence that we are convinced will prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Sean Phillips murdered his own daughter.”

Probable cause documents obtained by FOX 17 in October 2013 explain why investigators believe Sean Phillips had a motive to kill his four month-old daughter Katherine.

Investigators say there was an argument between Phillips and Kate’s mother, Ariel Courtland. According to them, Phillips did not want to take a paternity test and wanted to put Kate up for adoption. He was ordered to take a test on the same day she went missing and never showed up. He was the last one to be seen with her.