Authorities in North Carolina have obtained a mattress that is believed to be a key piece of evidence in the disappearance of 10 year old Zahra Baker.
Police spent four days last week scouring a local landfill in search of the mattress that was thrown out only days before Zahra was reported missing with no luck and called the search off on Friday. Then several days later on Tuesday employees at the Foothills Environmental Landfill in Lenoir, N.C. stumbled across the mattress and turned it over to authorities.
Hickory Police Department issued a statement that the mattress is believed to contain DNA which will be analyzed to confirm it is related to the case.
Zahra Baker was reported missing on October 9, though no one aside from family has reported seeing the girl since September 25. On October 12 police announced they were changing the investigation from an abduction to a homicide.
Elisa Baker, Zahra’s stepmother, was arrested several weeks ago on unrelated charges. While in jail she confessed to writing a fake ransom note and was charged with obstruction of justice. Monday Elisa joined the police at a search site as she has agreed to cooperate with investigators, though no one has released what information she has given or whether she has admitted to any crime. Elisa Baker accompanied police to a site near a home she lived in several years ago on Monday, however she never left the police vehicle at the site.
Zahra’s father Adam Baker was arrested Monday on unrelated charges. The police had said from the beginning that there were charges against the father but they were not arresting him as he cooperated with the investigation. He was arrested at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport as he awaited the arrival of a family member.
At the request of Adam Baker the nearest Australian consulate was notified of his arrest. Baker is still a citizen of Australia.
Contact was made last week with Zahra’s biological mother in Australia and medical records were requested.
Despite rumors that circulated online Tuesday, no remains of the missing girl have been found according to Hickory Police.