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Somer Thompson Murder Update: Did Mom Cover for Sex Offender Suspect?

Somer Thompson (AP) AP

ORANGE PARK, Fla. (CBS/AP) Somer Thompson's accused killer, convicted sex offender Jarred Harrell, told police he was at his mother's home the afternoon investigators say the 7-year-old died, according to police reports and other records.

PICTURES: Somer Thompson

But newly released records also show that Harrell's mother told him she'd provide his alibi during a jail phone call. According to The Florida Times-Union, the records, released Thursday, mostly involve unrelated child pornography charges against Harrell, but also included new details about Somer's case.

The little girl vanished while walking home from school in north Florida in Oct. 2009. Her body was eventually found in a Georgia landfill. Investigators worked the case for months before arresting Harrell in Mississippi on child pornography charges. They soon pinned him for Somer's murder.

But Harrell says he didn't do it. Authorities redacted portions of Harrell's statements to investigators, but the documents show he told police he was with his mother at her Orange Park house in the hours after Somer disappeared on her walk home from school.

Jarred Harrell (AP/Clay County Sheriff Office)
Harrell's mother told police she was with him at the home for an hour before they left the house, had dinner together and then split up.

PICTURES: Somer Thompson

But in a jail call between them months later, she told her son she'd give him an alibi in Somer's disappearance, the records show.

The State Attorney's Office cited several public records exemptions for the redactions, including one protecting details of confessions.

Harrell, a 24-year-old unemployed restaurant worker, is being held without bail. He has pleaded not guilty to charges of sexually assaulting and killing Somer Thompson.


PICTURES: Somer Thompson

February 12, 2010 - Somer Thompson Murder: Person of Interest Jarred Harrell Arrested with Child Porno
January 22, 2010 - Somer Thompson Murder: Mom Warned a Year Before 7-Year-Old's Abduction
November 4, 2009 - Reward Now $45K to Find Somer Thompson's Killer
October 29, 2009 - Sheriff: Help Me Catch Somer Thompson's Killer
October 27, 2009 - Somer Thompson Funeral: Little Girl Laid to Rest as Sky Fills with Purple
October 27, 2009 - More Than 1,000 Tips But No Leads in Somer Thompson Murder
October 26, 2009 - Somber Sendoff for 7-Year-Old Somer Thompson, Florida Girl Who Vanished After School
October 23, 2009 - Somer Thompson Pictures: Her Mother Vows Justice, A Community Vows Never to Forget
October 23, 2009 - In Somer Thompson Murder, Local Sex Offenders No Longer Suspects, Say Cops
October 23, 2009 - Somer Thompson's Mom to Killer: "We're Coming For You"
October 23, 2009 - How Police Found Somer Thompson and How They Hope to Catch Her Killer
October 22, 2009 - Somer Thompson Body Likely Found, Says Florida Sheriff
October 21, 2009 - Search for Missing 7-Year-Old Somer Thompson Leads to Body in Landfill
October 20, 2009 - Somer Thompson Vanished After School, Seven-Year-Old Girl Missing in Orange Park, Fla.

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