Florida authorities found missing 7-month-old baby Shannon Dedrick alive and well on the evening of Thursday, Nov. 4, 2009.
Cops say the child was under her babysitter, Susan Elizabeth Baker's bed, in a 2 ft. by 3 ft. cedar box with a lid for about 12 hours. There was no bottle for Shannon in the box and it contained a blanket and bacon powder to cover the scent of her dirty diaper. The box was surrounded by a few other items to conceal the box.
Baker is Shannon's father's half-step sister and Shannon's aunt.
He said police received permission to search the Bakers' home and executed a search warrant at 8:30 p.m. Shannon was found at approximately 9:55 p.m.
The child was rushed to the N.W. Florida Community Hospital, but appeared to be healthy.
Sheriff Bobby Haddock said he and several other officers called their wives from the hospital with the good news.
"There was a lot of grown men crying," he said.
Cops say Baker asked the child's mother, Christina Lynn Mercer, on Friday, Oct. 30, 2009 if she could have custody of Shannon. Mercer agreed.
According to police, Baker met Mercer around 1:30 a.m. on Oct. 31, 2009 and Mercer gave Shannon to Baker.
Charges will be filed against both Baker and Mercer for interfering in child custody, filing a fase report about a missing child and a crime and contributing to the delinquency of a child.
Cops say Baker will also be charged with neglect of child with aggravated circumstances and Mercer will be charges with desertion of a child.
In an early morning press conference, Sheriff Haddock carried Shannon out to the microphone with him with tears in his eyes.
"We are the proud Papas of the little girl. This is Shannon Lea Dedrick," he said. "We found her safe."
He carried her to see her grandmother who said, "I love you more than life itself."
Sheriff Haddock said, statistically, the child should be dead.
He expressed relief and thanked all of the people involved in the search for the baby.
Police said they were investigating Baker as a person of interest from Day 1. She was convicted of assault and battery and assault with intent to kill in South Carolina in 1987.
She was also charged in the disappearance of 3-year-old Paul Leonard Baker, but was never indicted and the child was never found.
Shannon is in DCF custody.