Stepmom Arrested for Murder Gives Birth - FOX 54 WZDX – Huntsville News, Weather and Sports

Stepmom Arrested for Murder Gives Birth (updated)

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The stepmother of a 9-year-old girl who died after being forced to run for three hours gave birth Wednesday after she was arrested and charged with murder.

Etowah County District Attorney Jimmie Harp says Jessica Mae Hardin is under guard at a hospital after giving birth.

Hardin and her mother-in-law, Joyce Hardin Garrard were charged with murder in the death of Savannah Hardin.

Harp says Savannah Hardin had a bladder condition and was not supposed to have the caffeine in chocolate. He says there is no evidence the condition contributed to her death.

We're told it was her grandmother, Joyce Hardin Garrard that was punishing her for lying about eating a candy bar on the school bus. Garrard is also charged with murder.

Etowah County's district attorney says he may upgrade the charges to capital murder, which carries a possible death sentence.

Meanwhile, neighbors of the family say the can't believe what happened in their neighborhood. Gary Smith says, "In this community right here, it was a real shock.  There's other ways of punishing a kid.  Make em sit in time out."

At Carlilse Elementary, Savannah's classmates wrote her cards and left them on her desk in the hallway.

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