Two parents in North Carolina were charged with the murder of their baby after infant remains were found in their backyard.
An investigation commenced last Friday night after law enforcement in North Carolina were tipped that the baby was dead, but the death had not been reported by the parents, Dustin Vandyke, 28, and Gracie Riddle, 18. Police told WRAL-TV that they believe the baby was murdered around Thanksgiving 2021.
The Erwin Police Department turned up to the residence of Vandyke and Riddle, which is 20 miles outside Fayetteville, with cadaver dogs. Police then conducted a search before locating human remains.
“With the assistance of Harnett County Sheriff’s Department’s cadaver canine, investigators discovered a deceased and badly decomposed infant buried behind the residence,” the Erwin Police Department confirmed in a press release, according to the Daily Record.
Police haven’t released the name of the tipster but say that they believe the tipster was aware of the infant’s death for some time.
“I think this person just finally got to the point to where their conscience got to [them] and they decided they needed to talk about it and tell someone and that’s how we initially got the report,” Erwin Chief of Police Jonathan Johnson told WRAL.
“You just never know what somebody is going through or why somebody would do the things they do. You just have to be vigilant and report anything suspicious,” Johnson said. He added that this is likely an isolated incident.
PEOPLE have reported that Vandyke and Riddle have both been charged with one count of first-degree murder. They are in custody and have been denied bail, neither suspect has entered a plea. Court records do not show any legal representation for either party.
The Medical Examiner will perform an autopsy on the baby to ascertain the cause of death. No motive has been established yet.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: ABC11.COM
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