DSS welfare check sparked investigation into missing 9-month-old baby

South Carolina News

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) – On Monday, warrants released by Myrtle Beach police say the baby was beaten to death by the mother’s boyfriend.

According to Horry County Deputy Coroner Darris Fowler, the remains of a child were found in the Socastee area on Saturday. Fowler says the baby, identified as Aaliyana McCoy,  died on or about July 15 at an unknown time and the death is being investigated as a homicide. The baby’s remains were sent to Charleston to determine the cause of death.

The child was reported missing Wednesday to the Myrtle Beach Police Department, according to Capt. Joey Crosby. According to the police report, the complaint came from the Department of Social Services.

A social worker reached out to police about conducting a welfare check on an active case and when officers responded to the home, they spoke to the baby’s grandmother who reported that she last saw the baby on June 2 and she last saw the baby’s mother on September 14.

The initial police report identifies the mother of the child as a victim and states that both mother and child were entered into the National Crime Information Center as missing.

Over the course of the investigation, the mother, Ladasha Harriett, 19, of Myrtle Beach, and Harriett’s boyfriend, Daquan Simmons, 22, were both charged with homicide by child abuse. Remains found Saturday were of a 9-month-old baby, believed to be the missing child.

Warrants state that Simmons is accused of beating the infant on July 15, 2017, causing the child’s death. After the baby died, Simmons and Harriett disposed of the 9-month-old’s body and “made efforts to conceal the infant’s remains from discovery.”

Warrants for the baby’s mother state she allowed Simmons to beat the infant and failed to seek help or medical attention for the child. During an interview on September 23, Harriett told police that she witnessed her baby pass away, then placed the infant in a car seat and allowed Simmons to leave their apartment with the deceased child. According to warrants, Simmons and Harriett met up the day after the infant died and “buried the baby in the ground in a wooded area.”

According to Capt. Joey Crosby with the Myrtle Beach Police Department, the baby’s remains were located on a plot of land off of Hague Drive in the Socastee area.

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