NORRISTOWN, Pa. (CBS) — A funeral is being held on Monday for 10-month-old Zara “Moo” Scruggs, who died after allegedly being raped by her father last week. The funeral was held at the American Legion located on the 500 block of Marshall Street in Norristown.
Over the weekend, at least 500 people packed the street in front of the home where Zara, known affectionately as Moo, lived with her mother Erica.READ MORE: 2 Trenton Men Arrested On Drug Charges After Officers Break Up Party With Teens, Police Say
“I just love you all because you all love my baby, and I appreciate everybody,” mother Erica Scruggs said.
Those gathered released thousands of balloons in the infant’s memory, trying to erase the thought of the heinous way she left this world.READ MORE: Pennsylvania Teachers To Get 1-Shot Johnson & Johnson Vaccine, Gov. Wolf Says
“I woke up with my daughter screaming, mom. He says she’s not breathing,” Smith said.
Zara’s father, 29-year-old Austin Stevens, is in jail facing rape, aggravated assault and murder charges.
Investigators say he sexually assaulted his own daughter, and an autopsy showed the baby also suffered blunt force trauma to her head.
“No, we didn’t think nothing bad. Nothing. If I had a clue, no! The love right now, even with his other side of his family. No, no, we never thought anything like this,” Smith said.MORE NEWS: Nearly 900 Chester Upland School District Students Return To Classroom For Hybrid Learning
But the focus Friday night was not on Stevens or the dastardly crimes police say he committed. It was on supporting Zara’s mother and her grandparents.