EDITOR'S NOTE: Updated to reflect Case was charged with reckless murder.
A Limestone County woman has been charged with reckless murder in connection to the death of a 13-month-old baby that was left in a car for several hours, an official said.
Limestone County Sheriff's Office deputy and public information officer Stephen Young said Elizabeth Anne Case, 36, of Toney, left her child inside a car overnight Friday and into the afternoon hours on Saturday.
Saturday afternoon, Young said deputies responded to the intersection of Alabama 251 and U.S. 31. Athens police and Athens Fire & Rescue were at the scene with a vehicle containing the child, Case and the child's grandmother.
"It was determined that the infant child had been left inside a vehicle overnight Friday and well into Saturday on East Limestone Road, and that the mother and grandmother were attempting to transport the child to the hospital," Young said. "The baby was transported to Athens-Limestone Hospital where he was pronounced dead."
Investigators determined Case left her residence on East Limestone Road between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. with her child buckled into a front-facing car seat and without strapping the seat to the vehicle. Young said Case traveled with the child, "dumpster diving" in both Limestone and Madison counties, and returned home at 5:40 a.m. He added the baby was still in the vehicle when Case went inside and went to bed.
Young said Case awoke around 1:30 p.m. when the baby’s grandmother came to the residence to see him. She woke Case up by banging on the door when she couldn’t find her grandchild. They searched for the baby and found him in the car.
Instead of seeking immediate medical help, Young said Case took the child in the home and placed him in the shower. The grandmother called 911, loaded the child in the car with Case, and met Athens police at the Recreation Center at Alabama 251 and U.S. 31.
Investigators developed probable cause to arrest Case for murder and transported her to the Limestone County Jail. Young said Case "is a known drug user" and was currently out on bond in connection to a first-degree robbery.
The News Courier will have more information as it becomes available.