Tests will determine if baby found in pond was born alive
Tue, 10 May 2011 21:18:53 GMT —
Update: Wednesday, May 11 at 3:10 p.m.:
Cassidy King made her first court appearance Wednesday afternoon. She appeared in court with her public attorney, Stephen Murrell.
A judge set her next hearing for May 23rd.
Update: Wednesday, May 11 at 11:50 a.m.:
Cassidy King is expected to make her first court appearance Wednesday afternoon. Officials at the Randolph County courthouse told KRCG it's likely the sheriff's department will take her out of jail for the arraignment.
Tests are underway Tuesday to determine if an infant found in a duffel bag in a Randolph County pond was born alive.For now, the child's mother is only facing a charge of abandonment of a corpse, a class D felony. Cassidy Nicole Ann King, 25, of Moberly, turned herself in Monday and is being held on a $20,000 cash bond.Court documents show King gave birth to the child several weeks ago at her home in Moberly, about 9 miles from where the infant was found dead.A man and a woman, later identified as King's sister, found the infant on Sunday inside a duffel bag that was submerged in a pond.The small pond is on private property about two miles west of Higbee, about 35 miles north of Columbia. Investigators have said that the property is owned by a relative of King.We need to know if the baby was born alive or not," said Randolph County Coroner Gerald Luntsford. If we find out the baby was born alive, we've got other evidence to go along with that."Luntsford said the medical examiners office in Boone County is conducting specialized microscopic tests on the infant's lungs to determine if the boy breathed air before dying.Being underwater for that long of time really interferes with the tests that determine cause of death, Luntsford said.The charging documents list the incident date as April 17, 2011 but it was not immediately clear if that was the date the infant was born. Luntsford said it appeared the infant was in the pond for about three weeks.The bag was weighed down with a concrete block, which kept the bag from floating to the surface, according to Luntsford.Luntsford said the water level at the pond appears to have dropped since the time the duffel bag was submerged and that's how the man and woman noticed the bag sticking out of the water.The people who found it probably knew it was there, Luntsford said. Luntsford also said that King's family was aware she was pregnant.During the medical examination, investigators say they found a towel inside the bag with the deceased infant with the name Cassidy King written on it.The probable cause statement also says that King's sister, who helped pull the bag from the pond, recognized the bag as one commonly used by her sister, Cassidy King.Court records did not list an attorney for King.A mandatory Child Death Review Board will take place Wednesday morning in Randolph County. Included on the review board will be the prosecutor, sheriff, Highway Patrol investigator and the coroner. The results of the review will be confidential and turned over to the prosecuting attorney.People are concerned, Luntsford said. Two people have come forward offering to pay for a proper burial.