PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A woman has been charged with the murder of a 1-year-old girl whose body was found in a shallow grave at a Philadelphia park earlier this week.
Philadelphia Police announced Thursday morning they had arrested and charged 33-year-old Nyishia Corbitt in connection with the death of 1-year-old Alina Barnes. Corbitt was Alina’s caregiver.
Corbitt was charged with murder, possession of an instrument of a crime, false reports, tampering with evidence, obstruction of justice, and abuse of a corpse.
“It’s a terrible tragedy for a child to meet such an end,” said Philadelphia Police Capt. Jack Ryan. “It shouldn’t happen at all.”
Alina’s body was found partially buried in the woods near Ogontz and Olney Avenues in Kemble Park on Tuesday morning. The child had been reported missing on Monday night.
Corbitt has been caring for Alina for the past several weeks. She has two young children with Alina’s father.
Alina’s mother is currently in a Montgomery County jail on theft charges.
Police believe Corbitt suffocated the little girl on Oct. 9. They say Corbitt told her mother the following week on Monday that the girl was missing.
Her mother told police and a search started.
Corbitt lead detectives to the toddler’s shallow grave, police said. They also found surveillance near the park, close by to where Corbitt lived.
“Last Tuesday, on Oct. 9, it shows surveillance video of Miss Barnes exiting 5600 Ogontz Avenue, carrying the child who we believe already had been deceased in a child carrier. Ms. Corbitt then takes the child into the park area off of 16th and Olney and returns to the apartment complex,” said Ryan.
Police have not released a motive for the murder.
The toddler’s father was not the immediate caregiver at the time. Police say he didn’t immediately know Alina was missing.