The mother of a nine-year-old girl whose body was found stuffed into a duffel bag and dumped on a horse trail has been charged with murder.
Californian prosecutors said Taquesta Graham, 28, was charged with murdering Trinity Love Jones whose body was found by a park worker on March 5.
Graham’s boyfriend, Emiel Hunt was charged with murder on March 13 and papers filed at Los Angeles County Superior Court reveal detectives believe the girl was killed on, or around, March 1.
Trinity was found more than two weeks ago at the bottom of an embankment in the suburb of Hacienda Heights.
A park worker discovered Trinity after he spotted part of her upper body sticking out of a black duffel bag at the bottom of an embankment in Hacienda Heights, just southeast of Los Angeles.
Friends and family members described her as a joyful and talented girl who did well in school.
A memorial near where her body was found featured stuffed animals, heart-shaped balloons, dozens of votive candles and notes expressing love for Trinity and one that said “Rest in heaven, Princess.”
There were no obvious signs of trauma on her body.
Authorities have not revealed a cause of death or motive.
Hunt, who has a record of felony child abuse, was arrested on March 9 after police found him sleeping in his vehicle near San Diego International Airport.
Antonio Jones, the father of the victim, said the girl had been living with her mother, Taquesta Graham, and she hadn’t let him see the girl.
He and other family members were in Los Angeles County Superior Court in Pomona as Hunt made a brief appearance but did not enter a plea.
“I felt like a monster. I wanted to do to him what he did to her,” Barbara Jones, the girl’s grandmother, told reporters outside court.