An autopsy confirms that remains found in garbage bags in a Mississippi basement belonged to a small child.
Meridian police Chief Benny Dubose told The Meridian Star that the Friday autopsy at the state crime lab found a badly decomposed body with a broken rib on one side and cracked ribs on the other. The autopsy also found burns on the body, Dubose said.
Police have charged 35-year-old Celeste Louise Smith of Meridian with capital murder and two counts of child neglect. She led police to the body Wednesday after another woman reported her 5-year-old son, Jakie Toole, had been missing since April. Police say Smith once took care of the boy and his siblings.
Smith has told authorities that the child was badly burned while she was bathing him, Dubose said.
Dubose said officials are awaiting results of a DNA test to confirm the body’s identity, but said results could take weeks are longer.
Smith is jailed without bail and waived a preliminary hearing Monday, meaning the next legal stop for the case is for prosecutors to present it to a grand jury for indictment.
Meridian Municipal Judge Robbie Jones said Smith has stopped cooperating with authorities and isn’t providing any more details about the case.
BEFORE YOU GO…
… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.
If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.Click for more info