INDIANAPOLIS - Carol Velasquez was set to be sentenced Friday after pleading guilty to delivering drugs as an unlicensed midwife. Instead, just prior to her sentencing, Velasquez informed the judge she had hired a new lawyer in her case.
Now, Velasquez's supports are calling the prosecution a "witch hunt."
"I don't care if she had a license or not. She had the skill, she had the knowledge … she had exactly what I and my son needed," said Tammy Wadlington.
Velasquez was charged in April of 2013 with 17 felony counts, among them charges that she unlawfully administered the drugs Cytotec and Pitocin during labor and delivery of children in 2009 and 2010.
Velasquez had originally agreed to a plea deal that would have kept her out of prison – though she would have been a convicted felon and had to serve six years on probation.
That plea deal is up in the air now with her request for a new attorney.
"I can't adequately represent someone being on the case for an hour," said Karen Jensen, the lawyer now representing Velasquez. "I can't do that. That wouldn't be fair to my client. That wouldn't be fair to the court. It wouldn't be fair to the criminal justice system. I need a little bit of time to do my job well."
Kelly Tudor, whose 3-year-old daughter Ohana Tudor was delivered by Velasquez, said she is bitter about the case.
"This prosecution is solely a witch hunt," Tudor said. "She didn't do the things she is accused of. Period. She had to admit things based on bad advice from a lawyer."
Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Kristina Korobov said that, despite Velasquez's new lawyer, she doesn't see the situation being any different for her.
"There are circumstances where the court could make determinations about representations from counsel. Where they will say something was done erroneously," Korobov said. "However, this matter was an hour-long guilty plea under which every constitutional right was reviewed with the defendant. There would have to be additional allegations before something like that could happen."
Heidi Curtis, who lost her baby during a birth supervised by Velasquez, was prepared to testify Friday. Her next opportunity will be March 28, when Velazquez's hearing was rescheduled.