A farmer found the body of a newborn girl in the trash in 1992. DNA has led to the arrest of the baby’s parents.
The parents of a baby killed in 1992 are in custody after newly developed DNA evidence led investigators to them, state troopers said.
A farmer in Picayune, Mississippi, looking to feed his animals, found the infant’s body on April 15, 1992. The body was found in a trash bin inside a bag wrapped in a towel with other garbage behind a local pizzeria, police said.
“I moved the towel, and I says, ‘oh my god! that’s a little doll,'” the farmer told CBS affiliate WWL-TV back in 1992. “Then I said that ain’t a doll. That’s human flesh. And it turned me sick. I just got out and got my truck drove to my house, and called the authorities.”
An autopsy showed the baby was most likely born the morning on which it was found. It also revealed the baby was around three weeks premature and “lived a few minutes before being smothered,” authorities said.
The cause of death was determined to be perinatal asphyxia because of smothering, and the case was classified as a homicide.
Picayune Police reopened the case in August 2021. With advanced DNA technology, officials were able to develop their first suspects, building profiles and fingerprints from preserved evidence.
Inga Johansen Carriere, 50, of Avondale and Andrew K. Carriere II, 50, of River Ridge, are facing charges of first-degree murder. They are being held without bond at the Jefferson Parish Correctional Facility and await extradition to Mississippi. It was unknown if either of them has an attorney who could speak on their behalf.
“Without documentation and evidence collected and preserved as well as it was in 1992 this case would not have been solvable,” police said in a statement.
The investigation between the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation, Louisiana State Police and Picayune Police determined that the crime took place in Louisiana and the body was dumped in Mississippi. The unidentified infant was buried at Lee’s Chapel Baptist Church with a headstone donated by the community that read “Heavens Angel.”
“This breakthrough in the case is a testament to the advancements in forensic technology and the dedication of law enforcement agencies to bring justice to victims and their families,” state police said in a news release.
Freddy Drennan, who was the Picayune police chief when the baby was found, told CBS affiliate WWLTV that ne never forgot about the case.
“As I tell people, in law enforcement, you don’t work these cases. You live them,” Drennan said. “And you know, this is one of those cases that I had hoped all along that we would be able to put some closure to.”