South Carolina

Mother admits to suffocating baby found in SC landfill, agents say

Daniel’s law provides safe havens for unwanted babies

Under Daniel's law, children 60 days old or younger may be left at safe havens, which are hospitals, fire stations, houses of worship and police stations.
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Under Daniel's law, children 60 days old or younger may be left at safe havens, which are hospitals, fire stations, houses of worship and police stations.

Hours after state agents charged a mother who allegedly suffocated her infant son before putting him in a dumpster, crews combing a South Carolina landfill found what they believe is the baby boy’s body, according to officials.

Crews sifting through Twin Chimneys Landfill in Greenville County found the body of an infant just before 10 a.m. Thursday, said Thom Berry, spokesman for the State Law Enforcement Division.

The body will be positively identified by the Greenville County Coroner’s Office, but it is believed to be that of Anthony Frost, the 6-month-old baby whose mother is accused of putting him in a dumpster in Edgefield County.

The mother, 25-year-old Vernita Jones, of Clewiston, Fla., was charged Wednesday night with one count of homicide by child abuse, Berry said. She remains in the Edgefield County jail.

“Vernita Jones has admitted to law enforcement of suffocating her child in recorded statements,” SLED agents wrote in a warrant. “According to Vernita Jones’ statement, her child is dead.”

A mugshot of Jones was not immediately available Thursday morning.

The search of the Greenville County landfill began Wednesday after police in Johnston, about 50 miles west of Columbia, received a tip about a woman putting a baby in a dumpster, WRDW reported at the time. The trash from that dumpster was dumped into a truck and brought to the landfill.

Homicide by child abuse carries a minimum 20-year prison sentence, under South Carolina law.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.



Teddy Kulmala covers breaking news for The State and covered crime and courts for seven years in Columbia, Rock Hill, Aiken and Lumberton, N.C. He graduated from Clemson University and grew up in Barnwell County.


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