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Elisa Baker: Zahra Baker Stepmom Indicted

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By Jason Beahm on February 23, 2011 6:10 AM

Speaking of indictments, here is a Zahra baker update: Elisa Baker was indicated on charges of second-degree murder in the death of stepdaughter Zahra Baker, who was 10 at the time of her death in North Carolina.

An indictment is a formal charge handed down by a grand jury that the accused has allegedly committed a crime. It is not the same as being convicted. At a grand jury proceeding, the defendant is not represented and does not get to introduce evidence, cross examine witnesses or challenge the evidence presented.

Zahra Baker lost part of her left leg when she was five and lost her hearing while she underwent cancer treatment. Her disappearance made national and international headlines last year after she went missing in Hickory, North Carolina. Police found Zahra Baker's' dismembered remains about a month after she went missing.

There does not appear to be credible evidence to suggest anyone besides Elisa Baker, including her husband Adam Baker, was involved in Zahra Baker's death, said Prosecutor James Gaither Jr. This is "a milestone of holding someone accountable that members of team Zahra have been working toward since the first words spoken on that 911 call," said Hickory Police Chief Tom Adkins, the Associated Press reports.

According to the prosecution, Elisa Baker planted a random note and then killed Zahra Baker. She was charged for obstruction of justice after admitting that she planted the note.

"The defendant took advantage of a position of trust or confidence including a domestic relationship, to commit the offense," said the indictment, CNN reports.

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