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Sunday
Dec052010

Zahra Baker Case: Stepmother Reportedly Cuts a Deal

Photo Courtesy - ABC News/Handout(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- Zahra Baker's stepmother has reportedly made a deal with prosecutors that would allow her to avoid a first degree murder charge -- and a potential sentence of death or life in prison -- to help with the investigation of the girl's death. Sources told ABC affiliate WSOC-TV in Charlotte, N.C., that Elisa Baker signed an agreement with prosecutors that would take first degree murder charges off the table in the death of the 10-year-old disabled girl whose dismembered body was found in November after a month-long search.

Neither Elisa Baker's attorneys nor prosecutors would confirm the deal, but warrants in the case released this week detail the cooperation she has provided police in the case. According to the documents, Zahra's stepmother Elisa Baker told North Carolina police through her lawyer that after the girl's death, Zahra was dismembered, her body parts placed in trash bags and then rolled into a comforter and car cover. Baker also directed police where to look for the body parts.

The stepmother directed police to a dumpster where she and husband Adam Baker, the little girl's father, dumped Zahra's mattress, the warrant said. A car cover and comforter used to "conceal and transport the body parts" were also stashed in the dumpster. Investigators eventually found Zahra's prosthetic leg wrapped in a white trash bag and tossed in a separate dumpster. A piece of bone and additional body parts were found at two additional locations.

Zahra had lost her leg along with most of her hearing while battling with bone cancer.

Elisa Baker is currently in jail on one charge of felony obstruction of justice after allegedly admitting she penned a $1 million ransom note which was discovered Oct. 9, the day Zahra went missing from her Hickory, N.C., home.

Adam Baker was held in prison on unrelated charges, but is free on bond.

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