BURKE COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - A 3-year-old boy who was found dead on a front porch in March died of hypothermia, according to the official autopsy released Thursday.
Landyn Michael Melton was found dead on March 15 on a porch on Hopewell Road. A neighbor called to report what they thought was a child's body.
Melton's mother, 23-year-old Jamie Basinger, was charged with felony involuntary manslaughter and felony child abuse. The indictments came down Monday, April 3, and were acted on a week later.
It is still unclear how the child ended up on the porch in the bitter cold, but the child's body had no signs of trauma, according to the autopsy.
It was in the low 20s that morning and officials do believe Landyn was on the porch "for a while," said Major Banks Hinceman.
Four search warrants were issued after the child was found dead. According to the affidavits presented to a judge to allow the searches to take place, Jamie Basinger was questioned by investigators and "Admitted to methamphetamine drug use on March 13, 2017 and marijuana drug use on March 14, 2017."
Basinger also told authorities she last saw her son alive at 10:30 p.m. on March 14 when she put him to bed.
The warrants state that Basinger volunteered to take what is called a Ten Panel Drug Screening Urine Test. The paperwork states results from that showed Basinger tested positive for a "Multitude of illegal substances (drugs)." Because of that test, additional urine and blood samples were requested and seized from Basinger and sent to the state lab for analysis. Results of those tests have not been released."
When Basinger was arrested and was being taken into the Magistrate's Office, WBTV asked her if drugs had played a part in what happened. She remained silent.