November 3rd, 2010
07:44 PM ET

Bone found in search for missing North Carolina girl

Search teams have discovered a bone that may be related to the disappearance of 10-year-old Zahra Baker, police in North Carolina said Wednesday.

The bone will be sent to the medical examiner's office in Chapel Hill for further examination, the Hickory Police Department said.

In the past week, the Hickory Police Department said it has recovered key pieces of evidence in the search for the 10-year-old cancer survivor, who was reported missing by her stepmother on October 9.

Zahra Baker was reported missing by her stepmother October 9.

Police on Monday confirmed that a prosthetic leg found last week in a brushy area off a road belonged to Zahra, who lost her leg to bone cancer when she was 5.

Also last week, employees at an environmental landfill found a mattress thought to have belonged to Zahra. Investigators believe the mattress was disposed of days before Zahra was reported missing, and hoped to use it to reinforce the timeline of her disappearance.  DNA tests on the mattress are being performed.

The discovery of the bone also comes two days after a Catawba County grand jury indicted Zahra's stepmother, Elisa Baker, on an obstruction of justice charge related to the search for Zahra.

The charge stems from a fake ransom note that authorities say Baker admitted to writing to distract police from the search for Zahra.

Zahra's father, Adam Baker, is in custody on charges of submitting worthless checks and failing to appear in court.

Police earlier acknowledged that he faced bad-check charges, which are unrelated to the disappearance of his daughter. But they did not initially arrest him, as he had been helping authorities in their search.

The disappearance of Zahra, who was hearing impaired and had persevered through numerous health battles, has made international headlines.

Baker and his daughter, who are from Australia, moved to the United States after he met his future wife, Elisa Baker, online.

Meanwhile Wednesday, crews continued to search for evidence near the lake where Zahra's prosthesis was found, CNN affiliate WBTV reported.

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Filed under: Crime • Justice • Missing Children • North Carolina
soundoff (322 Responses)
  1. Three Dog Mama

    I lived in the Hickory, NC area for a few years in the late 1970's. I was horrified when I read the account for the first time back in October. Hickory? With a murder of a young girl? I thought that wasn't the Hickory I lived in. I hope that they find the rest of Zahra and can give her some peace. These people are losers from the get go. I can't believe that someone a half a world away would uproot their daughter to move to another country, especially one with special needs. My heart goes out to the family in Australia. I just want them to know that all people aren't bad in the US. Rest in peace Zahra. You will be found.

    November 4, 2010 at 2:56 am | Report abuse |
  2. Lisa

    What kind of world we live in today. Poor child!!! I just hope she has peace now since her parents could not provide it!

    November 4, 2010 at 2:56 am | Report abuse |
  3. texmix

    i wonder how many that post the crap that they do have kids or grandkids? if you dont wait till you do then remember what you said when you were younger. karma plays funny games. buena suerte (good luck)

    November 4, 2010 at 2:57 am | Report abuse |
  4. Ok chris

    Were The angels in the wood chipper also?

    November 4, 2010 at 3:00 am | Report abuse |
  5. Truth Seeker

    For those of you who Haven't been following this story from the beginning, Oct. 9th (2010)- Zahra was 10 years old, lived with her step-mother (Eliza) and father (Adam), wore hearing aids due to hearing loss, had a (now recovered) prosthetic leg due to it's loss from her having bone cancer, they moved around the US frequently (media outlets and/or police haven't said why), she was homeschooled by her step-mom for the current year, her biological mom & other family lives in Australia, and her past school had reported her possible abuse case to authorities after Zahra went to school with bruises. Police came to their home on Oct. 9th because of a fire. An admittedly fake ransom note written by Zahra's stemom was found at that time on her dad's vehicle. Both parents told police they had last seen her that afternoon, taking a nap in her bed. Her bed mattress has since been recovered from a dump & has been sent for DNA testing... But appears to have been disposed of days before Oct. 9th. May Zahra RIP.

    November 4, 2010 at 3:02 am | Report abuse |
  6. Ashley Singleton

    Her parents killed her, damn it!

    November 4, 2010 at 3:07 am | Report abuse |
  7. Patty

    I am so sorry for the family in Australia, especially the grandmother (wasn't she Zahra's main caregiver before her father moved to the US?). And while watching Nancy Grace on Tuesday evening, letters the stepmother wrote referred to herself as being 42, but "people mistake me for being much younger", well, she looks much older than 42. And she goes on in those letters that she is mistaken for a witch, misunderstood for her ways and appearance...yeah...She likes her piercings and her hair is normally red and black, but being in jail just doesn't give her allotment to look her best...really? Why is she so focused on herself so much? I really believe she is starving for undivided attention, even if it's negative. This is probably the reason Zahra was killed. I'm just saying........I just hope that her remains are found so that she may have a marked grave somewhere. When loved ones disappear, as we hear about almost everyday, until their remains are found, their disappearance/death is never final for the ones who loved them. Thanks for letting me sound off.

    November 4, 2010 at 3:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Maya2007

      I have to agree with you. She looks way older than 42 and not pretty IMO. I hope the stepmommy is so freaked by being caught right now. And that she deserves!!! If you think she wants all that undivided attention... she's gonna get it alright.

      November 4, 2010 at 7:13 am | Report abuse |
  8. texmix

    @rocky well lets get the ticker tape parade started. Dont blame yourselves if you killed her. we all are to blame. Well rocky with that logic enjoy your new friends in jail.

    November 4, 2010 at 3:17 am | Report abuse |
  9. Makeshift nom de plume

    What is it exactly that you people expect to accomplish by posting your misguided, miss-spelled, and overall pointless rants and raves about an event (albeit a sad one) that seems to happen everyday in this country, on a news site? Instead of praising or demeaning god, or posting your opinions of the difference between right and wrong, or mentioning a "woodchipper" over and over again; Why not spend the short time you all have on this earth, treating each other like decent humans should and living life to its fullest. Or maybe you could ... I dont know ... teach your children how to live moral and tolerant lives so they will grow up to become model citizens in a world that is in short supply. Or maybe you could go to sleep instead of posting a pointless "blurb" at 2:00 AM.

    November 4, 2010 at 3:23 am | Report abuse |
  10. texmix

    @chris and rohanda your dads should have thought more about birth control

    November 4, 2010 at 3:24 am | Report abuse |
  11. texmix

    @make i agree. the issue is most people just think of themselves me me me i deserve this and am owed this. grow up

    November 4, 2010 at 3:36 am | Report abuse |
  12. MaliQ Da God

    Swift justice for ppl like that shld be in order here! As soon as they are found guilty in a court of law they shld be hung publicly in the middle of town for the world to see!

    November 4, 2010 at 3:37 am | Report abuse |
  13. texmix

    @believar this is not an issue that God has a say. These monsters will be tried by a jury of their peers and will be given the harshest sentences. remember about the seperation of church and state

    November 4, 2010 at 3:51 am | Report abuse |
  14. A Believer

    Please take a trip to Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, walk around the streets with a sign around your neck that says you don't believe in God.

    November 4, 2010 at 4:05 am | Report abuse |
    • deskjob4me

      How Christian-like of you.

      November 4, 2010 at 9:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Seedenbetter

      I'm sure you loving Christians would persecute and kill me.

      November 4, 2010 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Seedenbetter

      Is that a threat against all the evil atheists? I dare you to walk around Yemen with a sign around your neck saying "I don't believe Mohammad is a prophet".

      November 4, 2010 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Seedenbetter

      Is that a threat against all the evil atheists? I dare you to walk around Yemen with a sign around your neck that says "I don't believe Mohammad was a prophet".

      November 4, 2010 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
  15. mambypambyland

    why...........................? smh. she doesnt deserve this.

    November 4, 2010 at 4:11 am | Report abuse |
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