Tips from Mexico to Connecticut are coming on the whereabouts of Janet and Ramon Baretto of Union County.
The couple jumped bail in May before a circuit court hearing for Janet on a charge she tampered with a potential witness.
They were indicted on charges related to the May 2008 death of their 2-year-old adopted daughter, Ena, and the treatment of other children in their care.
A Union County grand jury indicted the couple in 2008 on 10 counts including child endangerment, felony child abuse and manslaughter by culpable negligence.
“We’ve had calls from all over the place,” said U.S. Marshal Gale Manning of Oxford, part of a team interested in finding the Barretos.
The calls are coming after a weekend television episode of “America’s Most Wanted,” which dramatizes stories about people wanted by law enforcement.
Manning and bail bondsman Josh Rupert of Tupelo say they’re optimistic the Barretos will be discovered soon.
Rupert’s company issued a $900,000 bond for them in November 2008 after they’d spent months in the Union County jail.
He’s anxious for their return.
“It’s just a matter of time,” Rupert said Tuesday.
After he and law enforcement discovered the Barretos had left their rural county home, speculation was that they had gone to Mexico, where Ramon has family.
Janet’s daughter, teenager Marainna Torres, admitted she killed the child in a fit of rage after being forced to care for the numerous infants believed to have been adopted from Guatemala. She’s still in the Union County jail and is expected to be a key prosecution witness, when and if her mother and stepfather go on trial.
Torres likely won’t be sentenced until after that.
Janet Barreto gained an extra criminal charge last spring when she allegedly made a threatening phone call to Torres in the jail.
That’s when their attorney, Tony Farese of Ashland, withdrew his representation, saying he couldn’t defend two people facing different charges, which could present a conflict of interests.
Just before that, Farese reportedly had worked out a plea deal of prison time, but significantly less than they could have received from a trial jury.
That deal is off the table now, and District Attorney Ben Creekmore has said he’s anxious for the Barretos’ return and a public prosecution.
Contact Patsy R. Brumfield at (662) 678-1596 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To see more
If you missed the airing of America’s Most Wanted on Saturday, go to www.amw.com to see clips and more information on the Barreto case.
Patsy R. Brumfied/NEMS Daily Journal