A South Carolina mother who claimed her 11-month-old daughter was snatched out her arms was arrested after the missing infant was found dead in a diaper box Tuesday afternoon.
Police said deputies found Harlee Lewis’ body in a plastic bag inside a diaper box located approximately 1,000 yards from her Chesterfield County home. Breanna Lewis, 19, told investigators that she had her daughter in her arms and was heading to the mailbox when an unknown man drove up and punched her several times before taking the infant, according to WBTV.
Though Breanna had facial bruising, she allegedly admitted to police that she fabricated the kidnapping story. The station reported that Harlee’s body was found two hours after her mother made the report.
Officials confirmed Wednesday afternoon that an autopsy is complete, but the results have been released to the public. However, WSOC has learned that Harlee died between 8 and 8:30 a.m. Tuesday—about six hours before her mother called police.
“After 22 years of doing this job, certain things just didn’t add up,” Chesterfield Sheriff’s Office Major Briana Davis told the station. “I was already in the mindset of, ‘That baby is here somewhere, and it’s not going to be good.'”
The incoherent mother admitted during a follow-up interview Tuesday that her injuries occurred last week when she drove too fast around a curb and flipped her vehicle. At the time, she told medics that the baby was in the car when she was actually with a babysitter, according to WSOC.
Chesterfield County Sheriff Jay Brooks told WDPE that the child’s father died by suicide in 2017 and that his family was trying to get custody of the baby girl.
Meanwhile, Breanna is charged with filing a false police report and improper disposal of human remains. She hasn’t had a bond hearing for either charge.
[Featured image: Breanna Lewis/Police handout; Harlee Lewis/South Carolina Law Enforcement Division]