A Baltimore County day care owner charged with shooting her husband last week at a Washington, D.C. hotel after confronting him about child molestation claims was denied bail during a court hearing Friday.

Shanteari Weems, 50, was in Superior Court of the District of Columbia facing charges of assault with intent to kill. Charges also included the possession of an unregistered firearm, possession of unregistered ammunition and carrying a pistol without a license, according to police.

Judge Sherry M. Trafford found that Weems’ offense was serious, that there were concerns about community safety and that the government proved probable cause for the charges.

“People have disagreements or reasons to confront loved ones for any number of reasons and the court doesn’t really consider whether emotions were heightened,” Trafford said.

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Police have charged her with shooting her 57-year-old husband and former police officer, James Weems, on July 21 after learning of accusations that he had violated children at her day care, Lil Kidz Kastle Daycare, in Owings Mills. James Weems has since been charged with 13 counts of sexual abuse related to three victims. The day care remains closed due to the investigation.

James Weems will be extradited to Baltimore County and will appear in court next week, Baltimore County Police said Friday.

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Shanteari Weems is being represented by lawyers at Bates Garcia Attorney at Law, the law firm of Ivan J. Bates, the recently nominated Democratic candidate for Baltimore City state’s attorney.

One of her lawyers, Tony Garcia, said Shanteari Weems shot James Weems after he made a “physical advance towards” her in their eighth floor hotel room.

Garcia argued self defense on behalf of Shanteari Weems, and described her husband as going from “0 to 1,000″ after she confronted him about the sexual abuse claims. But the government requested detention.

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“Your honor, we’re not asking for an acquittal, we are here today to argue that Ms. Weems is not a flight risk,” said Garcia. “We are asking for strict supervised bail, but there’s no pattern that shows this woman has a violent history.”

Both husband and wife have worked in law enforcement. James served as a Baltimore Police officer, leaving the force in 2008, while Shanteari worked as a correctional officer for a decade.

D.C. police found in the hotel room two handguns, two shell casings, and a notebook with handwritten notes in which Weems, the author, wrote that she wanted to shoot the victim but not kill him — but maybe cause paralysis — and that she wanted “these kids to get justice.”

Weems’ next court date is scheduled for August 9.

penelope.blackwell@thebaltimorebanner.com

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Penelope Blackwell is a Breaking News reporter with The Banner. Previously, she covered local government in Durham, NC, for The News & Observer. She received her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Morgan State University and her master’s in journalism from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.

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