GAS CITY, Ind. (WISH) — A woman has been officially charged for the murder of her stepdaughter. Investigators said they had argued over a stolen charm bracelet earlier in the evening.
Amanda Carmack faces charges for murder, neglect of a dependent resulting in death, domestic batter and strangulation. Grant County Prosecutor Rodney Faulk intends to seek life without parole for Carmack.
Investigators say she murdered 10-year-old Skylea Carmack on Aug. 31.
According to court documents, Amanda told investigators that she discovered Skylea had stolen a charm bracelet from one of the kids, then searched her bedroom and found the bracelet. She then said Skylea didn’t come down for dinner and that she couldn’t find her.
She called Kevin Carmack, Skylea’s biological father, a truck driver who was returning from Maryland.
A Silver Alert was issued for Skylea on Sunday night.
On Sept. 1, First Child Advocacy Center interviewed the six other children that live in the house. Three of the children are Amanda Carmack’s children. The other three are her brother’s children. The children told investigators that Amanda Carmack was physically abusive and that Skylea had been “confined to her room for the last week and a half.”
Gas City press conference
They said that they “would have to stand with their face against the wall with their hands in the air” for several hours when they were in trouble. They also said they would be whipped with a belt.
In an interview with detectives on Sept. 1, Amanda told investigators that she doesn’t hit the children, then later admitted to hitting Skylea with an open hand following the charm bracelet fight.
In this interview, detectives said Amanda displayed “numerous sings of deception.” When police asked her if she killed Skylea, she just stared back at detectives.
On Sept. 3, Amanda consented to and then failed a polygraph test conducted by the Grant County Sheriff’s Office.
Just after midnight on Sept. 4, investigators say that Amanda arrived at the Gas City Police Department. While sobbing on the floor, she admitted to killing Skylea, according to court documents.
“She stated she does not remember all of the details but she remembers being on top of her in the barn while she was on her back. She started choking her with her hands then she thinks she tied something around her neck,” court documents state.
A few hours later, her body was discovered in of a trash bag inside of a shed outside her home.
An autopsy ruled Skylea’s death a homicide by strangulation. Detectives believe she was killed between 4:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Aug. 31.
Online court records do not yet list a future court date for Amanda Carmack.
On the evening of Sept. 4, hundreds gathered to honor Skylea with a vigil.