Mother arrested in 2001 cold case death of infant found on side of road

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jul3,2024

JOHNSON COUNTY, Texas (TCN) — Officials recently identified and arrested the mother of an infant whose remains were found nearly 23 years ago on the side of a road.

According to the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office, in November 2001, an individual picking up cans on the side of Briar Oaks Road found the infant’s body wrapped in a jacket with her umbilical cord still attached. Investigators allege the baby girl was likely born alive outside a hospital and had recently died. The sheriff’s office named her “Angel Baby Doe” because they were unable to identify her at the time.

Authorities suspected foul play in the infant’s death. Decades later, in June 2021, the sheriff’s office teamed up with genetic genealogy company Othram Inc. to help identify the child using advanced DNA testing. Othram scientists developed a DNA profile for the victim and provided new investigative leads in the case.

According to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, officials collected DNA samples from a possible match, Shelby Stotts, in September 2023, and they compared it to the victim. As a result, investigators identified Stotts as the mother.

The sheriff’s office alleges Stotts “recklessly caused the death of her newborn daughter by leaving the baby unattended on the side of the road,” and she failed to seek medical care after Angel Baby Doe’s birth. The baby reportedly bled to death because her umbilical cord was never clamped.

On July 1, the attorney general’s office announced that they secured an indictment against Stotts for second-degree manslaughter. She remains held in the Johnson County Jail. 

In a statement, Paxton said, “After more than 20 years, we are closer to securing justice for Angel Baby Doe and ensuring that the person responsible for this tragedy is held accountable.”

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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