A date has been set for the murder trial of 42-year-old Scott Fremont Schollenberger, Jr., who has been held in the Lebanon County (Pennsylvania) Correctional Facility without bail since his arrest on September 11, 2020.
Scott, along with his live-in fiancee, 35-year-old Kimberly Marie Maurer, are accused of causing the death of Scott’s 12-year-old son, Maxwell Thomas Schollenberger, in May of 2020. Based on their months-long investigation, police and the Lebanon County District Attorney’s office believe Scott and Kim abused, neglected, and held Max captive in their Annville, Pennsylvania home for a period of months or even years. Max had not seen a doctor since he was two or three years old, and he was never enrolled in school. His body was found on May 26, emaciated and suffering from blunt force trauma, in an unlit room with the window coverings duct-taped shut and nearly every surface caked with feces, including the bed, which was the only piece of furniture in the room.
Several other children living in the home were found to be in good physical condition and well-nourished.
Although it is unclear how long Max was kept in these inhumane conditions, there appear to be no photos available of Max over the age of about five or six. The family purchased the Annville home in October of 2017.
Both Scott and Kim were arraigned on the evening of their arrest; they have each been charged with homicide and conspiracy to commit homicide, both first degree felonies, and endangering the welfare of a child by a parent and conspiracy to commit the same, both second degree felonies.
Max’s biological mother, Sara, spoke with me at length a few weeks after news of the arrests broke, and I condensed our three-hour conversation into about an hour for Suffer the Little Children Podcast. Many online commenters have been needlessly cruel, trying to heap blame upon her for Max’s death, when the truth is that Scott, who I believe to be a narcissist, went to great lengths to prevent Sara from seeing Max. My interview with Sara, in which she gave a lot of backstory about her relationship with Scott and talked about how Max was initially taken away from her and subsequently kept from her by Scott, is definitely worth listening to with an open mind.
Scott’s case appears to be progressing quickly through the court system, although it could easily be postponed at any point by a strategically timed motion by his defense. However, for now, Scott’s jury trial has been scheduled to begin at 8:30 AM on February 22, 2021.
Prior to that, Scott will be seen in the courtroom of President Judge John C. Tylwalk at 8:30 AM on February 2, 2021 for what is known as a “call of the list” hearing, known in some jurisdictions as a pre-trial conference. The purpose of this hearing is to advise the trial judge of the status of the case, whether a plea deal has been negotiated, or if the case will proceed to trial.
Interestingly, the trial is set to take place in the courtroom of a different judge, Samuel A. Kline.
Scott’s trial on a different matter, that of an alleged physical assault against Kim in July, is scheduled to take place in November. A date for Kim’s murder trial has not been scheduled.
Click here for my ongoing coverage of Max’s case.
Sources: The United Judicial System of Pennsylvania web portal