18-year-old may face murder charge in buried baby case, retired judge says

Remains found in Brooke Richardson's backyard
Posted at 10:18 PM, Jul 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-25 23:54:24-04

CINCINNATI -- Prosecutors may bring murder charges against an 18-year-old accused of killing her baby and burying the child in her backyard, a retired Hamilton County judge says.

“I think this young lady will probably and should be prosecuted for murder, probably aggravated murder,"  Norbert Nadel told WCPO Tuesday.

Nadel said if anyone else was involved, they could be charged, too.

“There must be a father out there somewhere," he said.

Nadel, a judge for 40 years, said this is one of the most disturbing cases he's heard of.

“I think it's a horrible thing,” said Nadel, now county recorder.

Investigators have been at the Carlisle home of Brooke Skylar Richardson three times collecting the baby's remains and other evidence. They’re looking for any connection between the mother and her baby's death, Nadel said.

“They're going there looking for evidence and they want to make sure these charges stick,” he said.

The baby was alive at birth, according to court records, but authorities don’t know how long the baby lived. Court documents show the baby died on or about May 7.

The baby's remains were found July 14 in woods behind the house after investigators received a tip from a doctor that Richardson delivered a stillborn infant.

After a second search -- when investigators dug up soil samples and uncovered other evidence -- the recent Carlisle High School grad was arrested and charged with reckless homicide.

Investigators returned for a third search Monday.

Nadel believes all the evidence points to Richardson doing this intentionally.

“They may be looking at her cell phone, at any account she may have any Facebook -- anything to tie her together to the death of this child," Nadel said.

A murder conviction carries a sentence of 15 years to life. A reckless homicide conviction would mean one to five years in prison.