Mother who claimed her 7-week-old daughter was kidnapped arrested after child is found at bottom of ravine
Authorities in North Carolina said the mystery of the seven-week-old baby who was kidnapped in Henderson County has now unraveled and the mother has been charged with attempted murder after the infant was found at the bottom of a ravine.
911 calls in connection to the alleged kidnapping of seven-week-old Shaylie Madden were recently released to the public after her mother Krista Noelle Madden, 35, of Asheville, was charged with attempted first-degree murder.
Madden, whose bond at the time of arrest was set at $750,000, is scheduled to make her first appearance Friday, May 10, at the District Court of Henderson County, WLOS News 13 reports.
Authorities believe the newborn tot was the subject of an alleged kidnapping before she was tossed down a 50-75 foot ravine, Henderson County Sheriff Lowell Griffin said. They added that she was found safe hours later in an Edneyville man’s yard Thursday evening around 8 pm after he and his wife heard her crying.
Sheriff Griffin confirmed in a press conference that the 35-year-old mother has been charged with attempted first-degree murder.
According to police, Madden acted alone as she drove her child to Henderson County, abandoned her before getting rid of her vehicle, and told authorities she and her daughter had been abducted in Biltmore Park. She also told police she was able to get away from the kidnappers but that they took her baby.
At around 6 pm Thursday, Madden approached an unidentified man at the Barnwell Baptist Church in Henderson County and told him she and her baby were kidnapped, investigators said. Madden was taken to the Sheriff's Department to be interrogated after the man reported the incident to police.
While the 35-year-old woman did not admit to devising the kidnapping scheme, police said the information she gave them strongly indicated the same.
“She did provide enough information about her involvement that gave us the probable cause and we came to the conclusion we would move ahead with the attempted murder charge,” Sheriff Griffin told a press conference Friday morning.
The county's district attorney expects Madden's lawyers to request that she be evaluated, although the Sheriff's Office hasn't commented on her mental state.
News 13 crews asked during the press conference if there was any other actor involved in the abduction plot. In response, investigators said they believe she acted on her own, while also noting the investigation is still ongoing.
According to Sheriff Griffin, it appears the baby was found alongside a car seat at the bottom of the ravine, and was not seated in it. Madden is currently being held in Henderson County on a $750,000 bond.
—With AP inputs