Wednesday, June 11, 2014

"Who would do something to a defenseless baby?"

Live-In Boyfriend Dumps 19-Month-Old's Body In Riverdale Before Reporting Her Missing
Re-printed from a story at The Daily Mail on March 19th 2014
James HarrisAmeriah Roberson
Chicago Police charge a 23-year-old live-in boyfriend/babysitter with murdering a baby.

A 23-year-old Chicago has been charged with murder after police say he confessed to murdering his girlfriend’s 19-month-old daughter and dumping her body in a wooded area.

The body of Ameriah Roberson was discovered Sunday afternoon, March 16th 2014, near a derelict grain elevator in Riverdale - a rough neighborhood on the south side of Chicago.

Roberson's caretaker, James Harris, reported the little girl missing at around 5.30pm, some two hours after she had turned up dead.

Harris told police that he was looking after the toddler while her mother was at work when she wandered off outside the lobby of his apartment building in the 3500 block of South Rhodes Avenue in Oakland, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Sunday night, detectives were able to confirm that the little girl found dead in the 14000 block of South Normal Avenue in Riverdale at around 3:30 PM was the missing Ameriah Roberson.

A medical examiner performed an autopsy and determined that the child died from closed head trauma and subdural hematoma as a result of an assault.

During questioning, Harris confessed that he killed his girlfriend’s daughter in his apartment and then disposed of her body in a wooded, remote area, police said.

The victim’s maternal grandmother, Bernadette Madison, said her daughter, Jocelyn Roberson, has known Harris since grade school, but the two only started dating about seven months ago and he was not Ameriah's biological father.

Madison told NBC Chicago that Harris had initially claimed that he left Ameriah unattended in her car seat, and when he returned, she was gone.

The 3500 block of South Rhodes in Chicago where the murder occurred. Ameriah's body was found 17 miles away near the 14000 block of South Normal Avenue.

When Miss Roberson came by Harris’ apartment at 5:30 PM to pick up her daughter, she learned that her child was missing and had her boyfriend call police.

A police source told CBS Chicago that investigators have obtained surveillance footage showing Harris carrying a bag to the spot where little Ameriah’s body was later found.

"Who would do something to a defenseless baby?" Madison said.

The 46-year-old grandmother described Ameriah, a sweet girl with huge black eyes and dimples, as a little 'angel' who loved music and was her dancing partner.

‘What could she possible have done to make you became that irate and kill her?’ her grandmother wondered in an interview with WGN-TV.

Harris has been charged with first-degree murder and is due in court for a bond hearing Thursday March 20th 2014.

The Daily Mail, Man Admits To Beating Girlfriends Baby To Death
Chicago Sun-Times, Missing Child Found In Riverdale