This just in from TJ Hart – Jan Barrett

It was supposed to be a day of court room formalities for Misty Croslin, Ronald Cummings and Hope Sykes as they had pleas of not guilty made on their behalf by their attorneys. Misty Croslin, Ronald Cummings, Tommy Croslin, Hope Sykes and Donna Brock were arrested on January 20, 2010 on drug trafficking charges.

It started out normal enough for this rather unusual situation as Croslin pleaded not guilty to all seven drug charges brought against her today in court. Her attorney, Robert Fields, requested a jury trial. A pretrial hearing is set for March.

Ronald Cummings, father of missing 6-year-old Satsuma girl Haleigh Cummings who vanished February 9, 2009, did not appear in court. His attorney filed not guilty pleas on the drug trafficking charges for him.

While Misty Croslin was being arraigned on her charges, her father Hank Croslin Sr. was in court dealing with his own charges of doctor shopping, but that was just the tip of the iceberg.

Misty Croslin’s mother, Lisa Croslin, was arrested outside of court on an outstanding grand theft warrant from 2009, just hours before her daughter’s appearance.

Her stay in the Putnam County Jail where she had been before on forgery charges was brief today. That’s because millionaire bondsman-bounty hunter Leonard Padilla bailed her out shortly after 12 noon Thursday.

Padilla is a California-based bounty hunter who has offered to pay Croslin’s bail in exchange for information on missing Haleigh Cummings.

FirstCoast News.Com reported Thursday that Croslin’s lawyer has sent a strong warning to Leonard Padilla.

The cease-and-desist letter dated Feb. 17, 2010 says, “We have been informed that you have purchased a vehicle, cellular phones and other items for Hank and Lisa Croslin. Misty considers this action an unwanted, third-party contact intended to influence her parents to convince her to work with you.”

“Of course I’m trying to get to her. I want to get the truth from her. How else does he expect me to create goodwill between me and her?” said Padilla told FirstCoastNews.Com Thursday.

Padilla, who has not received the letter yet, confirmed that he had spent about $3,000 on a car for Hank Croslin Sr. and at least $200 on food and phone time for Misty or her family.

The letter went on to read: “Misty Croslin has made it clear to me that she does not desire your assistance in this matter. Therefore, she respectfully requests that you cease and desist any further attempts to contact her, either directly or by way of any third party.”

Wednesday, more jailhouse tapes of conversations between Croslin and her family were released by the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Department:

Haleigh Cummings Update: New Jail Video Released 2/18/10: Misty Croslin

Haleigh disappeared last February from her Satsuma home while Croslin was babysitting her. She reportedly was the last person seen with Haleigh Cummings, but she’s said she doesn’t know where the child is. Investigators say her stories remain inconsistent and conflict with the evidence in the case.

TJ Hart

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