Sean Phillips charged with open murder in Baby Kate case

Sean Phillips was charged via video late Friday afternoon in Mason County District Court.

More than two years after Katherine Phillips went missing, her father is charged with open murder.

Sean Phillips was charged via video late Friday afternoon in Mason County District Court.

In a press conference earlier in the day, Attorney General Bill Schuette announced the charges for Phillips.

Schuette said new evidence was discovered that supported the open murder charge. He would not allude to what type of evidence.

"This continuing investigation has included review of biological evidence, site visits, and the enlistment of experts from all over the world who are preeminent in their fields," said Schuette. "It is the objective of this prosecution to finally do justice for Baby Kate."

"Victims of crimes should never be forgotten," Schuette said. Four-month-old Katherine "Baby Kate" Phillips disappeared on June 29, 2011 while in the care of her father, Sean. Her remains have never been found.

Sean Phillips was convicted of unlawful imprisonment and is currently serving a 10-year-prison sentence.

The murder charge on Friday comes after a multi-jurisdictional investigation and will be prosecuted with help from a member of the State Attorney General's staff.

After he was sentenced, he was declared a suspect in Baby Kate's murder. Baby Kate disappeared in June of 2011 and despite a number of searches has never been found.

Baby Kate's Mother, Ariel Courtland, along with other family members were also present during Friday's announcement.

"There's some mixed emotions you know because it's her baby," said Ariel's Grandmother, Linda Carlson. "I'd just like to see it be done and have that closure. We might not be able to bury her but, guess that's just as good as it gets."

Phillips was denied bond on Friday, and is expected to appear back in court on October 16th. If convicted, he could face up to life in prison.

"Sean Phillips will be held accountable," Schuette said.