Second Mistrial Declared in Mother's Murder Case

Posted Tuesday, December 9, 2008 --- 4:50 a.m.

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — The trial of a Wisconsin woman accused of killing her 3-year-old daughter nearly 40 years ago in Orange County has ended in a mistrial for the second time.

The Superior Court panel announced Monday it was deadlocked 11-1 in favor of acquitting Donna Prentice of second-degree murder.

Prentice is accused of killing her daughter, Michelle Pulsifer, who disappeared in Huntington Beach in 1969 before her mother moved to Illinois with her boyfriend James Kent.

The toddler's aunt hired a private investigator, who brought the case to prosecutors.

The 61-year-old Prentice and Kent were charged in 2004. Kent died in custody in 2005.

In Prentice's first trial last year, a jury deadlocked 10-2 in favor of a murder conviction.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.

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