Detective: Mom's own security cameras reveal she lied about son' - CBS46 News

Detective: Mom's own security cameras reveal she lied about son's hot-car death

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Source: WGCL Source: WGCL

The lead detective in the case of a mother charged with murder in her son's hot-car death testified Wednesday that the mom's own security cameras caught her in a web of lies.

During a preliminary hearing, Fulton County Police Detective Jamie Gore said Lillian Stone, 25, originally told her she accidentally left her sleeping three-year-old son in the backseat of her car, parked in the driveway of her home on Smokeridge Drive in the City of South Fulton, for three hours on Halloween Day.

Video timestamps from cameras inside and outside the home show the boy, Melvin Smith, actually remained in the car for more than seven hours, Gore testified.

The medical examiner determined that heat caused the boy's death.

Gore said Stone's home was equipped with a doorbell camera that starts recording when there's motion in the driveway. It started recording at 12:40 p.m., more than four hours after police believe the mother returned to the house after dropping off her older child at school.

“You can see Melvin moving around in the car trying to take the seat belt off, like pulling at stuff," testified Gore. "All I could see is his arms moving.”

Around 3:20 p.m., cameras show the mother starting to leave the house and realizing her son was in the car. A passerby who happened to be a nurse called 911 and took the baby inside to try to render aid.

A detective said a search warrant turned up several remnants of apparent marijuana cigarettes, a spilled bottle of cough syrup, and a bottle of Oxycontin that had been prescribed to her son's father just days before the incident. The prescription was a 90-day supply, but the bottle was empty, Gore said.

A search warrant of the mom’s electronic tablet showed a long exchange of text messages between the parents discussing a breakup they’d had the day before the incident.

The boy's daycare teacher testified for the defense, saying Stone appeared to be a loving mother. She recalled Stone's actions each time she dropped off her son.

 “She would kiss her child a thousand times before she walked out the door – a thousand times," said Dashia Ellison as she broke down in tears. "She was just a great parent.”

Judge Melynee Leftridge ruled there's enough evidence to send Stone's case to trial on charges of felony murder, malice murder and child cruelty.

The judge allowed Stone to get out of jail on $75,000 bond while she awaits trial. During that time, she's not allowed to have contact with her surviving 5-year-old son.

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