Quinton Simon’s mother Leilani has pleaded not guilty to murdering toddler Georgia

The mother of Quinton Simon, the 20-month-old Georgia boy who disappeared last month, pleaded not guilty after being charged with his disappearance and murder, according to a report Wednesday.

A public defender entered the lawsuit on behalf of Leilani Simon, 22, in Chatham County Court. Simon was initially supposed to appear in court himself, but according to the information, ultimately did not do so FOX 28 Savannah. The judge refused bail and she will not be released from prison on bail.

Simon first reported her son missing at 9 a.m. on October 5. He was last seen at the Savannah home she shared with her boyfriend, her 3-year-old son and her mother – who had custody of both children. She reportedly told police she thought someone had taken her son.

No motive was released, but her mother, Billie Jo Howell, previously said she doesn’t trust her daughter.

“She didn’t always do the right thing,” Howell admitted in an interview.

Leilani Simon's booking photo
Leilani Simon’s booking photo.
Chatham County Detention Center

Police eventually said they believed Quinton was dead and spent weeks searching a landfill site for his remains, which they believe they found on November 18.

To get bail denied, prosecutors could reasonably have argued that Simon posed a risk of absconding after she left her town and went drinking with her mother in October while authorities raided a landfill site for her son’s remains.

Although she broke no laws by fleeing her home – where the media was encamped – it was deemed in distaste that the grieving mum and her mother Howell chose to make the trip.

Quinton Simon.
Quinton Simon.
family handout

They were spotted on the deck of Sting Ray’s on Tybee Island, just outside of Savannah, Georgia, where they “drank patron shots in the deck area, were loud and laughing,” a restaurant employee told the Post.

In an interview with WTOC-TV in late October, Leilani said she still hopes Quinton recovers.

“We want him back in our arms and holding us. We want that,” she said, adding, “We’re just hoping he’s in someone’s house … maybe they wanted a baby or couldn’t have a baby. Maybe they thought they were his saviors. That is our best hope at this point.”

The FBI searches the Chatham County landfill for the remains of little Quinton Simon.
The FBI search a landfill in Chatham County for the remains of little Quinton Simon.

Quinton’s biological father, Henry “Bubba” Lee, also said Leilani blamed him for the disappearance and told authorities he allegedly kidnapped him in the middle of the night, which he staunchly denied.

“They asked if I had it and when was the last time I was in Savannah?

“They told me Leilani said I came and picked him up overnight,” he told the Daily Mail.