Woman who helped mother hide boy’s body in suitcase to be sentenced
SALEM, Ind. (WISH) — The woman who pleaded guilty in the death of a boy whose body was found in a suitcase in southern Indiana is set to be sentenced on Nov. 21.
Dawn Coleman, 40, of Shreveport, Lousiana, was arrested in California in October 2022 for her connection to the death of 5-year-old Cairo Jordan of Atlanta, Georgia.
Court documents previously obtained by News 8 say that in April 2022, a mushroom hunter found Jordan dead inside a Las Vegas-themed suitcase outside of New Pekin, Indiana. New Pekin is 40 minutes north of Louisville.
Indiana State Police launched an investigation to try and identify Jordan and find the people responsible for his death. The trail went cold until police identified Coleman and the boy’s mother, 37-year-old Dejuane Anderson, of Atlanta, as suspects.
Coleman was arrested on Oct. 19, 2022, with the help of the San Francisco Police Department. An arrest warrant was issued for Anderson on Oct. 25, but police still have not been able to find her.
Court papers say Coleman told investigators she babysat Jordan while Anderson was in jail in Louisville in early April 2022. She told police she picked Anderson up when she was released from jail on April 11, and they traveled together to her cousin’s house in Louisville.
Coleman said she walked into the bedroom a few days later and found Anderson on top of Jordan, who was “laying face down on the bed, with his face into the mattress,” court documents say.
“It was already done,” Coleman said, referring to Jordan’s death, when she walked into the room, court documents say.
Coleman told investigators Anderson asked her to help her put Jordan inside Coleman’s hard-sided Las Vegas suitcase.
“Coleman zipped up the suitcase with Jordan inside and Anderson placed it in the trunk of the same car that they were traveling in,” court papers say.
After they got in the car, court papers say Anderson told Coleman she thought the boy was “something really bad, that he was a 100-year-old soul or some old soul that wasn’t supposed to be here.”
Anderson and Coleman drove to Washington County, carried the suitcase into a wooded area, and left it there, according to court documents.
Coleman was being held at the Washington County jail. She is facing charges for neglect of a dependant resulting in death, obstruction of justice, conspiracy to commit murder, and aiding murder.
Her sentencing hearing is set for 8:30 a.m. Nov. 21.
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