Miami County mother charged in connection with infant daughter’s death

Crime in Indianapolis

Amanda Burns

MIAMI COUNTY, Ind.—A Miami County woman faces several charges in connection with the death of her 4-month-old daughter. Court documents allege she used methamphetamine and marijuana before the child’s death.

Amanda Burns, 31, faces one count each of neglect resulting in death, reckless homicide, neglect of a dependent and possession of paraphernalia.

On December 6, 2019, first responders in Miami County were called to a home in the southern part of the county on a report of an unresponsive infant. The infant, Harley Mayhew, was transported to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

When police spoke with Burns, officers noted “it was apparent she was under the influence of an unknown substance. Her mannerisms were consistent with methamphetamine use.”

Court documents show during the interview, Burns said she placed the infant in her adult bed, face down, around midnight.

About 12 hours later, Burns woke up. She said the infant was still beside her, face down. She said she didn’t check on the child initially and came back about 45 minutes later to find her blue in the face.

Court documents show she called an unnamed person, who arrived minutes later, started CPR and called 911. She also allegedly admitted to removing “illegal drug items” from the residence before police arrived.

The court documents state Burns was deceptive with officers, but admitted to taking methamphetamine around 5 p.m. and smoking marijuana before going to bed.

“She also admitted to using meth three to four times a week beginning the first of November when she and the children moved in with (redacted),” the probable cause reads.

Officers later found drug paraphernalia in the room of a 15-month-old child which was contained in an open purse lying on the floor.

Court documents show police obtained a screenshot of a Facebook message between burns and a relative, which occurred on Dec. 4, 2019.

A portion of the conversation from Burns reads, “These kids have me stressed (expletive) out. (Redacted) won’t go to sleep and won’t stop crying and (redacted) is being a brat not listening. I can’t do this by myself anymore…I can’t do it I’m dropping (redacted) off to (redacted) and I’m not looking back.”

On Jan. 29, a toxicologist report stated oral swabs showed Burns was under the influence of meth and marijuana while caring for the child.

An autopsy was performed and found the cause of death to be “sudden unexplained infant death.” Contributing factors included sleeping in an adult bed with a mother in an intoxicated state.

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