POLK COUNTY, Iowa – A West Des Moines mother accused of killing her 16-year-old adopted daughter is asking a judge to keep some evidence from being used during her murder trial.
Nicole Finn faces several charges related to the death of Natalie Finn — including first degree murder. The teen was found unresponsive and not breathing on the floor of a bare room at her family’s home in October of 2016. She was wearing a diaper at the time of her death. An autopsy found she died of cardiac arrest after being denied food by her adoptive parents.
A motion was filed Tuesday by Nicole Finn’s lawyer, outlining four pieces of information they hope to keep from being heard by the jury.
They include evidence of life insurance policies on Natalie and her siblings, evidence that one of her siblings hit Natalie with a bat, any reference to Natalie’s siblings as “resembling concentration camp prisoners”, and any testimony that Nicole Finn made a distasteful comment about her daughter’s death while picking up medical records.
The filing says information about the life insurance policies is irrelevant to the case and references to Natalie Finn’s siblings’ physical condition “is in poor taste and is meant to inflame the passions and prejudices of the jury.”
The motion also claims Nicole Finn did not pick up the medical records so could not have made a “distasteful” comment at the doctor’s office.
Nicole Finn is scheduled to go on trial November 27th in Polk County. She has repeatedly asked for her trial to be moved because of pre-trial publicity and a survey of potential jurors is currently underway. The judge in the case denied the earlier motions to move the trial but has said if the survey does not yield an impartial jury she will move the trial.
Joseph Finn, Nicole Finn’s ex-husband, is scheduled to go to trial January 8, 2018. He is charged with child endangerment resulting in death, first degree kidnapping, child endangerment-serious injury, and neglect or abandonment of a dependent person.