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Woman accused of killing 3-year-old in random attack giggles in court

The suspect allegedly stabbed a toddler to death in an Ohio grocery store parking lot.
Bionca Ellis murder suspect
Posted at 9:20 AM, Jun 12, 2024

An Ohio woman accused of murdering a young child in a random attack outside of a grocery appeared in court on Monday, where her arraignment was forced to restart multiple times due to her behavior.

Bionca Ellis is accused of fatally stabbing 3-year-old Julian Wood in the parking lot of a Giant Eagle grocery store in North Olmsted, Ohio, last week. According to authorities, Ellis allegedly stole two knives from the Volunteers of America store and then walked next door to the grocery store where she spotted Margot Wood pushing her 3-year-old son, Julian, in a cart.

Investigators say Wood was returning to her car when Ellis ran at them with a knife and stabbed the child. When Margot tried to pull the child to safety, Ellis allegedly stabbed her as well. Margot was injured but survived the attack. Authorities have said they believe the victims were randomly targeted.

After her appearance in court last week, Bionca Ellis’ case was moved to Cuyahoga County, where it twice ground to a halt during her arraignment on Monday.

The first time Judge Nancy Russo spoke to Ellis, she refused to acknowledge the judge and answer questions. In a second video appearance before the judge, she said she “did not know” if her indictment had been read to her.

Russo said, based on the indictment, this case could become a death penalty case. An attorney attempted to waive the right to arraignment, but the judge responded and said, “This could be a capital murder case, I don’t think that’s appropriate.”

For Ellis’ third attempt at arraignment, the court brought her downstairs to face the judge in person.

Ellis refused to acknowledge her indictment and stated that she did not want to read it or have her attorney read it to her.

Russo read the indictment out loud, and Ellis could be seen smiling while listening to the allegations leveled against her. When Russo asked if Ellis was going to plead not guilty, at first, she giggled and said “si” instead of responding with a yes or no. She eventually said yes.

Before Russo set bail, Julian Wood’s father, Jared Wood, spoke on behalf of his family. “Your honor, the day, one week ago, she took everything from us,” Wood said. “There is nothing that could ever replace my son or anything that my wife or I or even my other kids are going through. It’s horrendous.” Wood told the judge: “Do whatever you can to keep this monster behind bars,” and asked the judge to deny bail.

Russo set the bail for Ellis the highest she could: $5 million.

Last week, her bond was set in Rocky River at $1 million. During that proceeding, Ellis also refused to lift her head.

According to the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, a grand jury indicted Ellis on the following:

  • One count of aggravated murder
  • Two counts of murder
  • Two counts of attempted murder
  • Two counts of felonious assault
  • One count of endangering children
  • One count of tampering with evidence
  • One count of misdemeanor theft

This story was originally published by Court TV and Scripps News Cleveland.