A look inside case of baby Elaina - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

A look inside case of baby Elaina

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The couple convicted of killing Toledo toddler Elaina Steinfurth remain at the Lucas County jail.  Now Toledo police are revealing the facts that helped them solve the murder of baby Elaina.

13abc's Alexis Means has an inside look on how investigators weeded out the good and bad information to crack the case.

The case made national news after Elaina disappeared from her mother's ex-boyfriend's home. Police say they were always suspicious of the couple.

"Both of them admitted early on it was not a stranger abduction," says TPD Detective Vince Mauro.  

Toledo police had tips coming in from all over the country. They received information on numerous sightings of the baby. TPD, FBI agents and the coast guard spent hours searching garbage cans and the Maumee river. The baby's mother, Angela, even helped to search.     

"I got 20 million questions going through my head and the first one is why would you even take her," she said in an interview with 13abc Action News in June of this year.  

Detective Vince Mauro says she even tried to throw officers off by placing a soiled diaper by the river. Then running up to police saying she found a pamper. What Steinfurth didn't know is police had just searched that area.

"While they were standing there Sgt. McGee looked at the fish pointed out to agent and then he flipped it over when he flipped over that fish there were rocks that were stuck to the scales of the fish.  When they returned to find the diapers they found that the diapers were right next to the fish they knew at that time it was impossible for those diapers to be placed there at any time prior to their search being conducted," says Lucas County prosecutor Ian English.
     
Steinfurth and her ex, Steven king, were eventually arrested for lying to police. Police got a break in the case when the searched kings home at 704 Federal Street and found blood on the wall, bed, and a pillow case.

"Their explanation for why the blood was on those particular three places didn't really make sense to us. So at that point we were highly suspicious of all the stories they were giving us," says Detective Mauro.

The couple kept lying.

"Angela herself had confessed to us that she threw the baby into the river. So that's why a lot of energy and manpower was used searching the river," says the detective.  

 There were ups and downs in the case. TPD searched a garage at the home where Elaina disappeared, but didn't find anything. It wasn't until Steven king struck a deal with prosecutors and told police what happened and where they could find the baby. The baby was in the garage in the ceiling. Investigators say Steinfurth abused the child because she wouldn't stop crying.     

"Once she became frustrated she tossed the child across the bedroom," says the prosecutor.

The prosecutor says the couple then had sex.  Tuesday, Fing admitted his role in the crime. He said he found the baby in a room and she was having trouble breathing.    

"I panicked I thought she was dying I covered her mouth and nose with my hand and held it there until she stopped breathing. After Elaina died I wrapped her body in a bag and hid her body in the garage," says King.

Her mother declined to comment in court. They were both sentenced to life in prison.  

"Obviously is the good news is we found her remains and we were going to give her a proper burial and the bad news is obviously she's dead abused  prior to her death and after her death and throw away like a piece of trash," says the detective.

Jail administrators say it's possible Elaina's mother and her ex-boyfriend could be transported to prison Thursday. 

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