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SC mother charged with murder in death of her 11-month-old baby found in diaper box

Emily Bohatch, The State (Columbia, S.C.) on

Published in News & Features

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The mother whose baby was found dead in a diaper box after she reported her missing has been charged with murder, according to court records.

Breanna Denise Lewis, 19, of Chesterfield County, was charged with killing her 11-moth-old baby, Harlee Lane Lewis, on Monday, according to court documents.

Lewis originally was charged with filing a false police report and improper disposal of a human being.

Harlee was reported missing May 29, and deputies issued an Amber Alert as they began to search for the infant. Lewis originally said she was approached by a man in a van who punched her in the face and stole Harlee from her arms.

Lewis' face was severely bruised from a previous car accident, supposedly corroborating her claims.

Within hours, Harlee's body was found in a diaper box in a yard about 1,000 yards from the home, wrapped in a plastic bag. Lewis was arrested less than an hour after the discovery.

Initially, Lewis denied knowing where Harlee was until investigators showed her a picture of the diaper box.

During a May 31 news conference, Chesterfield County Sheriff Jay Brooks said investigators were awaiting the results of an autopsy to determine whether Harlee's death was accidental.

A gag order was issued in the case, preventing officials and witnesses from discussing it.

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