A 3-year-old Alabama girl who was allegedly abducted from a birthday party and then murdered died with toxic levels of meth and an anti-depressant in her system, according to testimony Tuesday in the case against one of the suspects accused in her death.
The lead investigator in the death of Kamille “Cupcake” McKinney, whose body was found in a dumpster at a landfill 10 days after her October 12 disappearance in Birmingham, revealed the toxicology details in a preliminary hearing for suspect Patrick Devone Stallworth, reports AL.com.
Stallworth also had a prescription for Trazadone, an anti-depressant used to treat insomnia, that was found in McKinney’s system, according to the outlet.
Stallworth, 39, and his girlfriend, Derick Irisha Brown, 29, both are facing charges of capital murder of a child under the age of 14 in connection with the girl’s death. A preliminary hearing for Brown will be held Friday, reports WVTM.
Stallworth told police that Brown gave McKinney the drugs, police detective Jonathan Ross testified, reports WBRC.
Stallworth’s attorney, Derrick Collins, said in court that Stallworth was not involved in the alleged abduction and murder of the girl, and that Stallworth initially denied knowing anything about the girl’s disappearance because of his love for Brown, according to AL.com.
But during Tuesday’s hearing, detective Ross alleged the two suspects were seen together on the day McKinney was taken and had approached other children in Stallworth’s blue SUV.
Stallworth purchased $18.91 worth of candy from a gas station at 12:02 p.m. on October 12 and drove with Brown around a housing community where they offered candy to kids, including an 11-year-old to whom a man allegedly identified as Stallworth said, “I’m looking for a girl that looks like you,” Ross testified, reports AL.com.
The 11-year-old and another girl had just left cheerleading practice at an elementary school when the alleged exchange occurred. But a security video from the school that verified and captured the interaction did not offer clear proof of the blue SUV’s occupants.
Another child, a 10-year-old boy, told police that McKinney “was crying” after she got into a vehicle that matched the description of Stallworth’s blue SUV, said Ross.
After Stallworth and Brown were identified as possible suspects during the search for McKinney, investigators went to the couple’s apartment and later detailed the pair.
Brown eventually directed authorities to a dumpster, which investigators tracked to a landfill where McKinney’s remains were recovered on October 22, said Ross.
An autopsy revealed the girl died of asphyxiation by suffocation.
Stallworth admitted buying the candy, and to the exchange with the two girls outside of the school, said Ross. But after he was arrested on the murder charge, Stallworth told police that he didn’t encounter McKinney on the night of her alleged abduction until he walked into his apartment to find the girl sitting with Brown on the couch, according to Ross.
“That’s not your child,” Stallworth allegedly told Brown, who nonetheless told Stallworth that she wanted to “keep” the girl and told Stallworth to “do something sexual to the child,” said Ross.
Stallworth told police he refused. Ross recounted the suspect’s statement that Brown later “put her hands over Cupcake’s nose and mouth,” and that Stallworth said he watched McKinney fall “asleep.”
Asked what that meant, Stallworth clarified that the girl was dead, according to Ross.
Stallworth’s DNA was not found on McKinney’s body, reports WVTM.
But according to AL.com, a plastic covering removed from a mattress in the living room of the apartment revealed blood and a mixture of DNA belonging to Stallworth, Brown and McKinney.
Circuit Judge Clyde Jones referred the allegations against Stallworth to a grand jury for consideration of a formal indictment.
Adam Danneman, a public defender representing Brown, previously told AL.com that Brown “adamantly denies” knowing anything about the abduction and is “horrified” by the case.
Both Stallworth and Brown are being held in the Jefferson County jail without bond, and could face the death penalty if convicted of the child’s murder.