A woman has been arrested on suspicion of murdering a 6-month-old baby who was found set on fire following a suspected kidnapping.
Felicia Marie-Nicole Smith, 25, is accused of 1st degree murder in connection with the death of Levi Cole Ellerbe, who was found with severe burns in Natchitoches, Louisiana, on the evening of July 17.
Emergency services were first called to the Mayberry Trailer Park by a mother who said that two suspects who she did not know came to her home, sprayed her with tear gas, and took off with her baby, reports NPD.
A search for the 6-month-old boy was launched involving officers from the Natchitoches Police Department, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office, Louisiana State Police and the Northwestern State University Police Department.
Around one hour later, officers responded to a report of a fire and discovered the baby, about a mile and a half away from the trailer park.
Levi was taken to the Natchitoches Regional Medical Center before being airlifted to University Medical Center, where he succumbed to his injuries, police said.
“I just seen it on fire. I didn’t see nobody or nothing,” Kanika Johnson, a Natchitoches resident who saw the baby, told The Town Talk newspaper. “I just thought some kids might have set it on fire or something. I had called the police and told them to hurry up and send somebody to put the fire out before it spreads.”
The Louisiana Office of State Fire Marshal, in collaboration with the Natchitoches Police Department, have now taken Smith into custody in connection with the boy’s murder. It is unclear what relationship the suspect has with the baby.