Home » Woman arrested for 2005 murder of newborn baby found dead in bathroom at Phoenix airport

Woman arrested for 2005 murder of newborn baby found dead in bathroom at Phoenix airport

by John Jefferson
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The mother of a baby found dead stuffed into a plastic bag and left abandoned in a bathroom at an Arizona airport in 2005 has been taken into custody.

On 10 October 2005, police responded to the Phoenix Sky Harbour International Airport in Arizona, after the dead baby was found in a terminal four bathroom, authorities said at a Phoenix Police Department news conference on Tuesday.

What they found was a horrific scene of a deceased female newborn, wrapped in newspapers and a white towel, and stuffed into a plastic bag with red Marriott letters on it.

“She just literally was welcomed into the world only to be murdered. It was just horrific,” Troy Hillman, a retired cold case homicide detective with the Phoenix Police Department, told KPHO.

Police at the time scoured nearby Marriott hotels in the Phoenix metro area, but they were unable to find any suspects.

DNA evidence collected from the scene, identified to be that of the mothers, was entered into a combined DNA index, which runs suspect DNA against other suspects, yet no matches were found.

The baby was seen by a medical examiner, who ruled the death to be homicide by suffocation.

Evidence at the scene indicated that the birth likely did not occur at the airport; instead, the bathroom was where the baby was abandoned by the suspect or suspects, Phoenix police Lieutenant James Hester said during the news conference.

After all leads were exhausted, the case was eventually passed on to the cold case homicide unit, and became to be known as the ‘Baby Skylar Homicide Case’.

Around 2019, police started to work with the FBI Violent Crime Task Force, and their collaboration resulted in the identification of the mother of the victim, who is also the suspect.

Supervisory Special Agent Dan Horan for the FBI Phoenix field office said that investigative genetic genealogy (IGG) was used in the case, which takes unknown crime scene DNA and traditional genealogy research to generate leads.

Investigators used publicly available genealogy databases to identify family member matches to an unknown profile. Mr Horan said that a member of the family tree consented to give a sample for the investigation.

Eventually, police were able to identify the suspect, and the mother of the newborn, as 51-year-old Annie Anderson.

Authorities spoke to Ms Anderson, who identified herself as the mother of the victim and provided an account of what happened, and was arrested for the homicide of baby Skylar.

Authorities said she was in the airport on business for a real estate boot camp.

The father is known to authorities, but they said they have “no reason to suspect he has criminal culpability.”

Ms Anderson is in custody in the state of Washington on an arrest warrant related to this investigation and is awaiting extradition to be formally charged in Arizona.

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