Mom's boyfriend charged in Chicago toddler's murder

Ameriah Roberson
CBS Chicago

CHICAGO - Authorities say a Chicago man has admitted to killing his girlfriend's 19-month old daughter.

The Cook County State's Attorney says 23-year-old James Harris has been charged with first-degree murder in the slaying of Ameriah Roberson. He is in custody and is expected to appear in bond court on Thursday.

A person walking in a wooded area in suburban Riverdale found the girl's body on Sunday, two hours before her mother reported her missing, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. The Cook County Medical Examiner's office determined the girl suffered injuries from an assault and ruled her death a homicide.

The child had reportedly been left with Harris while her mother went to work.

Police say Harris admitted to killing the child in his apartment on the city's South Side and then driving to the wooded area and dumping her body.

The Chicago Tribune reports the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services had no prior contact with Harris, who has a child of his own. But at the time of Ameriah's death, there was a pending abuse investigation against Ameriah's mother, according to the paper.