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DNA leads to arrests 30 years after infant found dead in trash

Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 3:36 AM CDT
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NAGS HEAD, N.C. (WITN) - A husband and wife from North Carolina have been arrested 30 years after their baby’s remains were found in the trash, WITN reports.

Detectives on Oct. 21 arrested 54-year-old Scott Poole and 51-year-old Robin Byrum, both of Taylorsville, Alexander County, for the felony charge of concealing the birth of a child, officials said in a press release from the Town of Nags Head.

The release says detectives used DNA evidence to solve the case of Baby Doe, whose remains were found in a trash can rack on April 4, 1991. The officers were unable to determine the gender of the baby due to decomposition.

Detectives arrested 51-year-old Robin Byrum and 54-year-old Scott Poole for the felony charge...
Detectives arrested 51-year-old Robin Byrum and 54-year-old Scott Poole for the felony charge of concealing the birth of a child in relation to the cold case of Baby Doe, whose remains were found in a trash can rack on April 4, 1991.(Town of Nags Head)

Additional charges may be filed against the couple as the investigation continues.

“These arrests are a result of many years of diligent investigation by our highly-trained and dedicated law enforcement professionals,” said Nags Head Mayor Ben Cahoon.

Officers began re-investigating evidence in the case in 2019, according to the press release, and sent Baby Doe’s rib bone to Othram, a private lab in The Woodlands, Texas, for forensic analysis. The lab recovered human DNA from the bone and used the material to create a “genealogical profile,” which, along with further investigation, led to Poole and Byrum.

“The tragedy of this child’s death and the manner in which his body was disposed of is compounded by the fact that, until now, no one has been found responsible for this incredibly heartbreaking act,” said Nags Head Police Chief Phil Webster. “But through the hard work of Nags Head Police investigators and our law enforcement partners in the case, those who did this will be held accountable for a death that has remained unsolved for three decades.”

Poole and Byrum were jailed on bonds of $250,000 each.

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