CHICAGO (CBS) – The mother of 16-month-old Semaj Crosby speaks after faced with the heartbreak of her daughter’s death.
CBS 2’s Vince Gerasole has more on what the mother had to say, after the body of Semaj was found in her home.
“She was my baby. She was my little girl,” said Sheri Gordon, Semaj’s mother.
Gordon is as distraught as you’d expect. Her daughter Semaj Crosby disappeared while playing outside on Tuesday and was discovered a day later dead in their own home – a death authorities call “suspicious.”
“She was a good baby. She liked to play and laughing,” Gordon said. “Always playing and always laughing.”
Grieving elsewhere with family, Gordon returned to the home for the first time on Friday.
“Just want her to rest in peace,” said Emily Weakley, Joliet.
There she witnessed the growing memorial created by strangers, and even investigators who left remembrances to honor Samaj.
“Hopefully we’ll get some answers to provide closure for that precious girl,” said Steve Broadway, Sr., Joliet.
Investigators returned to the house that has been deemed uninhabitable on Friday and removed additional items. They also clarified unanswered questions. The child’s body, they say was found underneath an undisturbed living room couch now collected as evidence. So far, an inconclusive autopsy report found no signs of blunt force trauma or physical injury.
“The house was in very deplorable condition,” said Will County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Chief Ackerson.
Authorities report as many as 15 Squatters lived in the home. In addition, Will County Sheriff’s Office released these photos of Samaj and deputies delivering Easter candy to the house after following up on an accidental 911 call. Days later a community would come together to search for the little girl, whose mother now grieves.
“Good support. Good support,” Gordon said.
DCFS case workers visited the house on Tuesday and saw Semaj alive just hours before she was reported missing, and about a day-and-a-half before her body was found.
According to Will County sheriffs they have not targeted any one individual suspect, but they haven’t ruled anyone out either.