“It’s unlikely that, on her own, she would have done these horrible things to that child,” attorney Michael Sullivan said.
He said that the woman was responsible for harming the child, but that it could have been worse if she had not complied, the newspaper reported.
Messages seeking comment were left Wednesday with Sullivan.
Authorities announced federal charges Tuesday against the three people the woman lived with in Ashland, about 65 miles southwest of Cleveland.
Jordie Callahan, 26, Jessica Hunt, 31, and Daniel J. “DJ” Brown, 33, were charged with forced labor. Callahan also was charged with tampering with a witness in the investigation.
A federal court lawyer for Callahan declined to comment.