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Missing toddler's body found in Sylmar

March 19, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
The search for a missing toddler reported kidnapped turned into a homicide investigation when the body of a child was found. The mother reported her child missing in Palmdale, then Thursday, a body of a child was discovered in Sylmar.The body was discovered at 11 a.m. Detectives have identified the remains as those of Emma Leigh Barker.

The investigation into the disappearance of the Emma Barker has been turned over to L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. homicide detectives.

Sheriff's investigators received a call around 11 p.m. Wednesday from the toddler's mother.

A 20-year-old woman told investigators the last thing she remembers is being at Lancaster City Park, when she was knocked unconscious. She says she woke up at a park-and-ride off Avenue S in Palmdale, about nine miles away, and discovered her baby was missing. She said she doesn't remember how she got there from Lancaster.

The woman was treated by paramedics at the park-and-ride and then taken to the hospital with unknown injuries.

Detectives interviewed the mother Wednesday night and Thursday morning and eventually they were led to the address on the 13,000 block of El Dorado. Sheriff's detectives would not specify what exactly brought them to the address but said it was based partially on interviews with the mother.

"Within a few hours, several inconsistencies developed during the investigation," said Lt. Pat Nelson, L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. "Many of those were investigated further through the course of the evening and further investigation led unfortunately to the discovery of the body of the toddler in the Mission Hills area here this morning at about 11 o'clock."

Detectives say the mother had injuries that were consistent with a struggle. They say that the mother is cooperating with detectives and that currently she is not considered a suspect.

If you have any information, you're asked to call the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's Palmdale station at (661) 272-2400.

Eyewitness News Reporters Sid Garcia, Robert Holguin and Leo Stallworth contributed to this report.


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