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Parents accused of killing 6-week old appear in court

Published: Jul. 26, 2021 at 11:56 AM EDT
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MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (WITN) - Parents accused of killing their infant daughter appeared before a Carteret County judge Monday morning.

Mellony McIver, 20, and Zackery Phelps, 26, both of Morehead City, are charged with second-degree murder.

The victim was six-and-a-half weeks old and died on July 7th. The two were arrested Friday by Morehead City police.

Authorities say they lived in a one-bedroom apartment on North 9th Street in Morehead City. Drugs and paraphernalia were all over the apartment, according to officials.

District Attorney Scott Thomas said McIver and Phelps were not married, but they were together. The couples neighbor, Amy Voorhees said “It just makes me feel sick to my stomach to feel that there was a young child next door that maybe I could of done something to help.”

Thomas said there is evidence to believe the couple participated in excessive drug use and officials are waiting on toxicology reports to see if the baby could have received drugs through the mother’s breast milk.

Thomas warns users there is a price to pay for harming those who are too young to protect themselves, “People who are using and abusing drugs need to understand that in this district if you put yourself at risk that’s bad enough, but if you put other people especially and infant child at risk or death then there will be charges.”

McIver and Phelps are being held on $1,000,000 secured bonds.

Authorities have not said how the infant died.

Both McIver and Phelps second appearances are set for August 13th.

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