Mother Accused of Killing Son, 5, Reported Missing From Carnival in 1991 Pleads Not Guilty

A Florida woman charged in the death of her 5-year-old son, who was reported missing from a New Jersey carnival more than two decades ago, has pleaded not guilty.

A lawyer for Michelle Lodzinski entered the plea in New Brunswick court Tuesday. 

Lodzinski, 46, has been in custody since her arrest August 7. She was extradited to New Jersey on Friday and is being held in the Middlesex County jail on $2 million bail.

She had said her son disappeared at a carnival, but investigators said her story kept changing. His skeletal remains were found in a marshy area of Edison 11 months later.

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Lodzinski went into seclusion after her son's remains were discovered, and neighbors said at the time that she didn't appear distraught. In late July, a county grand jury handed up a one-count indictment stating she "did purposely or knowingly kill" Wiltsey or did "purposely or knowingly inflict serious bodily injury" resulting in his death.

Lodzinski has run into other legal troubles over the years since her son died.

She surfaced in Michigan in January 1994 and said two men claiming to be FBI agents had abducted her at gunpoint outside her apartment building, forced her into a black SUV and drove her to Detroit, where they let her out.

She pleaded guilty in 1995 to making false statements to the FBI and fraudulently using the agency's seal. She was sentenced to probation.

In 1997, Lodzinski was charged with stealing a computer from her former employer. She pleaded guilty to a theft charge in 1998. A federal judge sentenced her to house arrest after she admitted she committed a crime while on probation.
 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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