Dad, stepmum kept 12-year-old in basement

A southwest Ohio couple suspected of keeping a 12-year-old girl locked in their basement for weeks will have their case heard by a grand jury.

The girl's father and stepmother appeared Monday in Middletown Municipal Court where bond was set at $25,000 each. A Butler County grand jury will hear their case.

The couple was charged in early July with kidnapping and child endangering. Butler County Children Service workers say the girl had been locked in the basement since mid-June, let out only to use the bathroom.

An attorney for 40-year-old Shawn Blackston said he has questions about the agency's investigation.

An attorney for 36-year-old Joanna Blackston did not return a message left Monday.

Joanna Blackston has been released on bail, and Shawn Blackston remains in custody.

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