MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - Shakara Dickens reported her daughter Lauryn missing in September of 2010. Now a jury has been selected for the mother's murder trial of her 9-month-old baby girl.
Verda Nelson lives a few houses away from Shakara Dickens' mother. She has a clear memory of September 2010 when dickens had moved out of her mother's home a month earlier.
"I was stunned - anything that has to do with children, it devastates me. There's no reason one person can't take care of one child."
Shakara Dickens and her daughter moved to an apartment in Raleigh. Lauryn Dickens was last seen Labor Day weekend 2010. Dickens told police Lauryn's father, who's in jail, told her to give the baby away. She told police she gave her to an unknown white woman; nine days later she filed a missing person report with police.
"We can't confirm anything the way she is saying it, she's been all over the board with different stories and the fact is we feel there has been bodily harm to the child," then-director Larry Godwin said on the case in September 2010.
Police dogs detected the odor of a decomposing body inside Dickens' apartment. Cops confiscated a baby jumper, car seat and a baby blanket, but no body. Even though Lauryn's body has never been found, Dickens is charged with the murder of her daughter.
"I hope she gets some justice," Nelson told abc24.com. "We don't know what happened, don't nobody know but her and the Lord."
The trial is expected to last one week.