Baby Mercedes Lain’s death ruled homicide

Crime

MARSHALL COUNTY, Ind. (WSBT) – The Marshall County prosecutor just released the preliminary autopsy results in the death of Mercedes Lain.

Mercedes Lain
Mercedes Lain

The coroner reports the 11 month old’s death is a homicide. The report states she died from blunt force injuries to her head.

The 11-month-old baby girl was found dead in a wooded area last week after she was missing for several days.

Her autopsy was done Friday in Fort Wayne.

The Marshall County prosecutor’s office says late Monday there were several anatomic findings, but they are not releasing what those findings were at this time.

However, the pathologist did label the cause of Mercedes’s death as blunt force injuries of the head and ruled it a homicide.

Justin Miller was supposed to be taking care of Mercedes the weekend she died. Miller told police that when he woke up Saturday morning Mercedes was dead, and that clearly is not what happened.

Miller is currently facing one count of neglect of a dependent resulting in death, which is a level one felony.

Mercedes was reported missing last Sunday by her parents. After a lengthy search involving state and local police along with the FBI, her body was found deep in the woods in Starke County.

Miller, along with Mercedes’s parents, were all arrested and admitted to using drugs including meth and synthetic marijuana.

Mercedes’s parents were in court on Friday and are each facing one count of neglect of a dependent. However, investigators don’t believe they had a direct role in her death.

Miller will be in court tomorrow morning for his initial hearing.

Right now, he is still only charged with neglect of a dependent resulting in death, but the prosecutor said last week that could change depending on these autopsy results.

He’s currently sitting in the Marshall County Jail on a $100,000 bond.

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