The prosecution has rested its case in the trial of a 62-year-old Michigamme woman charged with the unlawful imprisonment of her 32-year-old daughter.
Proceedings began for The People vs. Karen Kirby on Tuesday morning in Marquette County Circuit Court.
The charge stems from what some called a bizarre incident in May when law enforcement officials say they were forced to raid a Champion Township residence Kirby shared with Calvin Martz, following a failed well-being check on Kirby's daughter.
The question the court faces now is whether or not Karen Kirby did, in fact, restrain her daughter in the days leading up to the incident, and if she attempted to keep her from reaching law enforcement during the incident itself.
All electronic media devices were banned from the actual proceedings on Tuesday due to an objection from Kirby.
Kirby's daughter took the stand on Tuesday, claiming she has been a victim of sexual abuse at the hands of Calvin Martz for 20 years, after he had claimed her as his wife when she was 14 years old. She says she had planned a short visit to the Champion Township residence to visit her mother but was kept there against her will for several days and was physically restrained by her mother when law enforcement officials had come to retrieve her.
Kirby claims her daughter wanted to remain at the residence and recognizes the relationship between Martz and her daughter as husband and wife. Karen Kirby faces a maximum of 15 years in prison. Kirby has waived her right to a jury trial so the verdict will be made by Judge Thomas Solka. She has also waived her right to legal counsel and is defending herself.
The defense is expected to present its case in court on Wednesday.