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The body of an 11-month-old Indiana girl who had been missing for days was located in a wooded area on Wednesday night and her parents and babysitter have been arrested, according to reports.
Mercedes Lain’s parents Kenny Lain, 41, and Tiffany Coburn, 32, were charged with neglect of a dependent. Justin Miller, 37, who had planned to watch the girl for a few days, was charged with neglect of a dependent resulting in death, according to FOX 59 in Indianapolis.
Other charges are possible depending on the autopsy results.
“Our sincerest thank you to everyone who helped in the search for 11 month old Mercedes Lain, or called in tips,” FBI Indianapolis tweeted Thursday. “Sadly, she was found deceased in a wooded area in Starke County last night.”
Miller, a family friend, said he woke up “on or about August 14” and found Lain dead and left her body in a wooded area of Starke County, Indiana, property, the report said, citing police.
Miller had been watching her to let her parents “take a break,” authorities said, according to FOX 59.
She was last seen in the early hours of Saturday morning, the first day Miller said he had her, and her father reported her missing on Sunday. Police said there’s no evidence the parents knew of her death when she was reported missing.
Miller later led investigators to her body.
The parents had reportedly tried to contact Miller after it was determined he’d return her last Sunday. He allegedly told them he had dropped the girl off with a friend, the report said.
Police said they also had trouble contacting the girl’s parents and when they located her father he was “under the influence of an unknown substance,” court documents said, according to FOX 59.
Her disappearance prompted a statewide Silver Alert that was canceled on Thursday after she was found.
Police said Miller’s version of events changed several times and he later admitted to using synthetic marijuana while he was taking care of her.
Her cause of death has not been released.
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