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Crime

Fayette woman charged after infant dies Sunday in Columbia

COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)

Boone County prosecutors have charged a Fayette woman with second-degree murder after police found an 8-month-old girl dead at a north Columbia home.

Officers made the discovery after being called to a home in the 1000 block of Elleta Boulevard in north Columbia, according to a Columbia Police Department news release.

Police arrested Jennifer Johnson, 44, Monday morning. Johnson was in the Boone County Jail on Monday with no bond.

Court documents report the parents left the child and two other siblings in Johnson's care beginning around 5 p.m. Saturday.

The mother found the child around 8:30 a.m. unresponsive and cool to the touch after returning home and immediately noticed bruising. The parents then took the child to Women's and Children's Hospital, where the infant was pronounced dead.

Johnson told police that she last saw the infant alive at 2:15 a.m. after giving a bottle to the child.

According to court documents, Johnson took a call from the parents saying the baby had died and the parents wanted to see Johnson.

Two people who knew Johnson brought items that Johnson had at the home to Columbia police. Investigators found baby formula on Johnson's clothes and a swab of the same shirt tested positive for blood.

Johnson was previously charged with two counts of assault in Howard County in 2019. The complaint in the case states she strangled and bit another woman.

ABC17 News spoke with several neighbors who said they did not hear or see anything.

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ABC 17 News Team

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