A missing Indiana mother was found dead in her car nearly a week after she and her five-month-old baby were reported missing.
South Bend police found missing 27-year-old Alexis Morales and her five-month-old son Messiah inside her 2006 BMW X5 SUV on Tuesday. The young mother was pronounced dead at the scene, while her son was alive, and taken to a nearby hospital for observation.
Morales and her son were first reported missing last week after they left a gathering and went unheard from by friends and family.
She told friends at a cookout that she was going home to feed her son, but never made it home. An emergency alert was issued as her friends and family searched frantically throughout the area for the young mother and son.
Later Tuesday night, police received a call from a neighbor about a vehicle near their home. When they arrived, police found Alexis dead inside, while her son was alive and seemingly untouched.
Police Chief Scott Ruszkowski would not speculate on the length of time the vehicle was at that location or the length of time the mother was deceased before being found.
On Wednesday, police determined her death was a homicide while processing the scene and discovering visible injuries on her body, investigators said. It’s unclear what kind of injuries the mother sustained. An autopsy is scheduled for Friday.
Before she was found, Morales’ mother Sandra Piggie said in an interview with WNDU that it was unlike her daughter not to return home.
‘This is un-normal. She would have called me at least or dropped the baby off to me if she wanted to go out and have more fun,’ she said.
The South Bend Police Department is working with the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office to investigate the circumstances surrounding Morales’ death and her prior disappearance. The investigation remains ongoing.
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