Judge unseals search warrants in Zahra Baker case

An undated photo provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation shows Zahra Clare Baker. (FBI)

November 30, 2010 4:57:38 PM PST
According to court documents, 10-year-old Zahra Baker's dismembered body was concealed in a bed comforter and a car cover, then discarded in a dumpster behind a Hudson grocery store.Eleven warrants detail the account of the girl's stepmother, Elisa Baker, whose lawyers say she led police to the girl's remains.

The Charlotte Observer reports that the warrants were released Tuesday by order of Superior Court Judge Nathaniel Poovey.

Prosecutors wanted them to remain secret, saying their release could jeopardize the investigation.

Zahra Baker, who had used a prosthetic leg and hearing aids after a bout with cancer, was reported missing in October and police say they found her remains earlier this month.

The latest warrants say a polygraph test showed deception when police asked if Elisa Baker hurt the girl.

According to documents released Tuesday, Elisa Baker --through her attorney-- admitted that she and her husband, Zahra's father Adam Baker, wrapped the girl's prosthetic leg in a white trash bag and threw it in the apartment dumpster.

The documents also reveal, Elisa Baker said she and Adam Baker dumped a mattress and box springs at a trash dump.

The warrants don't say how Zahra died. No one has been charged in her death. Elisa Baker is jailed on charges of obstructing the investigation. Adam Baker is free on bond after being arrested on unrelated charges.

Meanwhile, a memorial service for Zahra Baker has been postponed.

Her family had planned a public memorial service on Thursday, but Drum Funeral Home in Hickory says it has decided to make the service private and hold it at a later date.

The funeral home will allow guests to stop by and sign a register book and view a tribute with photographs of the girl Thursday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Burial plans for Baker have not been determined. Adam Baker had said in a televised interview that after the case is over, he would like to return to Australia with his daughter's remains. Adam Baker met his wife on the Internet while he was living in Australia.

More than 1,000 people attended a vigil in downtown Hickory on Nov. 16 -- what would have been the girl's 11th birthday.

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