Mum who reported son missing charged with murder after body found in landfill

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    A mum-of-three who reported her son as missing has been charged with his murder after his remains were discovered in a landfill.

    Leilani Simon, 22, was arrested after her 20-month-old son Quinton disappeared from Savannah, Georgia, last month.

    Chatham County Police Department confirmed her arrest on Monday and said they were "deeply saddened by the case".

    The toddler was previously presumed dead after Simon reported him missing from her home on October 5.

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    The mum shared the property with her three-year-old son, her boyfriend and her mum. Leilani's mum had custody of both children.

    Chief Jeffrey Hadley said: "This afternoon Chatham County Police Department detectives arrested 22-year-old Leilani Simon and charged her with malice murder, concealing the death of another person, false reporting and making false statements in connection with the disappearance and death of her son 20-month old Quinton Simon."

    Simon claimed she thought someone had taken her son from his playpen at around 9am on the day he went missing, reports The Mirror.

    The call to emergency services came after a text to Diana McCarta, Quinton’s babysitter, early that morning telling her that her services would not be required that day.

    McCarta told WSAV: "I got a text this morning saying they would not be here — would not be babysitting them at 5:29 [a.m.].

    "Which was kind of odd because I have them even when she doesn’t work."

    Less than a week after Quinton's disappearance, police confirmed a criminal investigation had been launched.

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    Leilani's mum, Billie Jo Howell, is reported to have told police she did not trust her daughter and said in an interview that "She hasn’t always done the right thing."

    Hadley confirmed that human remains had been found on a waste management landfill after a month's search on Friday. An FBI laboratory confirmed the remains were human.

    He said: "Additional testing including DNA analysis, is being conducted and we have every reason to believe that this will confirm the remains are Quentin’s.

    "This is a heartbreaking development for everyone who loved Quinton, for the many people who came to know him after his disappearance, and for our department."

    Police said Simon is now being brought to the Chatham County Detention Centre to await a bond hearing and they "do not anticipate any other arrests in connection with this case."

    "She doesn't deserve a Thanksgiving," Hadley added.

    FBI Special Agent Will Clark added that what happened to Quinton was "unthinkable" but said it could be "days before we have final results" of DNA testing.

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