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Admits Leaving 'Baby Crystal' To Die In Road

Dec 8, 2004

Katie Stockton has pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the 2004 death of a child known as "Baby Crystal."

An Illinois woman has admitted to wrapping her infant daughter in plastic bags and dumping her on the side of the road to freeze to death. Katie Stockton, who is also believed to be the mother of two infants found dead in the trunk of an impounded car, admitted Thursday to leaving the baby girl along a rural roadside nearly five years ago.

After reaching an agreement with prosecutors, Stockton pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the December 2004 death of the infant known as Baby Crystal, who authorities believe is Stockton’s daughter.

Katie Stockton, 32, of Rockton Illinois, will likely avoid prosecution on the two other infant daughters that were found dead inside plastic bags in the truck of her car because detectives cannot actually prove that the babies were born alive.

It was after Stockton was arrested for Baby Chrystal’s death that investigators discovered her car had been sitting in an impound lot for over one year. Police impounded her car, towing it to a Winnebago County Sherriff’s Department facility to search for more clues in the Baby Crystal case. Stockton was carrying the skeletons of the babies in the trunk of her car when she was stopped for a traffic violation in 2008. The babies in the trunk were born full-term from separate pregnancies and were each wrapped in cloth and placed into separate plastic bags.

For five years, Stockton played a cat-and-mouse game with police and avoided being arrested for the death of Baby Crystal. She was finally charged in 2009 after officers tested the DNA from one of her discarded cigarette butts and concluded that she was the mother of Baby Crystal.

Stockton had previously denied that she had left the infant to die in the freezing cold on December 17, 2004, and had refused to cooperate with police.

Stockton was originally questioned in Baby Crystal's death in 2004 after the newborn's frozen remains were discovered in a plastic bag along a dead-end road near her parents' home. Prosecutors said that when detectives interviewed Stockton hours after the discovery, she lifted her shirt and asked if she looked like she had just given birth.

Police say that they do not know how long ago Stockton actually gave birth to the two babies found in the trunk or how long they had been in the back of her Saturn sedan.

Stockton also has a son, who is 11-years old. All of her pregnancies came from different fathers, authorities concluded.

Stockton faces up to 60 years in prison when she is sentenced April 5.

Don the Radio Guy

Mar 30, 2006
This is a major fear of mine. Every time I see something on the road that is of a certain size, I am afraid some maniac has put a baby in it. Seeing this story didn't help.
Dec 8, 2004
Katie Stockton Sentenced To 50 Years For Allowing Newborn To Freeze To Death On Illinois Road

Katie "Heeeeeeead" Stockton was sentenced to 50 years in prison for the first-degree murder of her newborn daughter.

ROCKFORD, Ill. -- A northern Illinois woman who admitted leaving a newborn daughter to freeze to death along a rural roadway in 2004 was sentenced Friday to 50 years in prison.

Katie Stockton, 32, faced up to 60 years in prison for the death of the infant, who became known as Baby Crystal around the Rock River Valley after her frozen remains were found. Winnebago County prosecutors dropped 11 remaining murder charges in exchange for her guilty plea in February to a single count of first-degree murder.

Before handing down the sentence, Winnebago County Judge John Truitt allowed testimony about skeletal remains of two other infants found years later in the trunk of Stockton's car, the Rockford Register Star reported (http://bit.ly/YYueU2).

Stockton hid her pregnancy and gave birth to the baby in secret on Dec. 17, 2004. Afterward, she stuffed the baby and soiled clothing into an orange shopping bag and placed it along a dead-end road near her parents' Rockton home.

She was questioned in the baby's death at the time, but denied she was the mother and refused to provide a DNA sample.

Detectives investigating the death years later collected evidence from a cigarette butt they saw Stockton discard, and authorities said saliva on the cigarette butt matched blood found on the clothing with Baby Crystal. Stockton was arrested in 2009 after further tests showed she was the baby's mother with a 99.96 percent certainty.

After her arrest, investigators discovered her car had been sitting in an impound lot for a year and searched it for more clues. That's when they found the skeletal remains of two other infants wrapped in cloth and stuffed in separate plastic bags and buried beneath a spare tire, chain saw and tire iron.

Forensic pathologists could not determine how the infant girls found in the trunk died or whether they were born alive. No charges have been filed in connection with those remains.
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