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Police charge 18-year-old Prichard mom with infant's murder

PRICHARD (AP) — Police Friday arrested an 18-year-old mother who said her baby had been abducted by an adoption agency and charged her with the infant's murder, Mobile County District Attorney John Tyson Jr. said Friday night.

Speaking at a late-night news conference, Tyson said authorities still hadn't found a body, the Mobile Press-Register reported on its Web site.

Geretha Lewis had told authorities that she gave 1-month-old Zarial Lewis Farris to two women who said they worked for Agape, an adoption agency in Daphne. She said she hadn't seen the baby since she handed her over July 20 in the parking lot of the University of South Alabama Children's and Women's Hospital.

Lewis told authorities she changed her mind a few days later and tried to contact the agency to get her baby back.

Prichard Police Chief Lawrence Battiste has said representatives for Agape said they have no record of Lewis.

Geretha Lewis' mother, Jackie Lewis, had told Battiste, a personal acquaintance, that her daughter wouldn't say what she had done with the baby, but finally said she had given it up for adoption.

A spokeswoman from the Mobile office of the FBI said about a dozen agents were helping Prichard with the investigation.

Cadaver dogs from Mississippi and canine units from Satsuma sniffed the area around the public housing development where Lewis lives. Officers made the rounds to question residents.

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Information from: Press-Register, www.al.com/mobileregister

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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