Local News

Investigators Treating Infant's Death as Homicide

Posted July 11, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— A 4-month old infant died at an in-home day care center Wednesday from what authorities say was a head injury. Tracy Stidham was running the center, but police say she wasn't there at the time of death. Now police say the woman may be charged with several violations.

A police search of the Stidham home turned up a small amount of marijuana and some drug paraphernalia. Police say they want to search the home again Friday, but wouldn't say what they are looking for.

Mark Stidham is defending his wife and his 12-year-old daughter saying they had nothing to do with the death of 4-month-old Bailey Tippett. Police are saying little about what they have determined to date, except that the investigation is at a sensitive stage.

The district attorney working on the case says she is in the same position.

By Friday morning, the Stidhams had retained the services of an attorney and were less willing to talk than they had been earlier.

Tracy Stidham had left seven children, including three of her own, alone in the house Wednesday when the baby was found dead.

Photographer:Mark Copeland