Lewis County mother indicted on murder and other charges in missing 3-year-old's death

A Lewis County mother has been indicted on murder and other charges in the death of her 3-year-old daughter who was reported missing in 2011.

Lena Marie Lunsford, 34, was indicted on one felony charge of murder of a child by a parent, guardian or custodian or other person by refusal or failure to provide necessities; one felony charge of death of a child by a parent, guardian or custodian or other person by child abuse; one felony charge of child abuse resulting in injury; and one felony charge of concealment of a deceased human body.

In November 2016, the Lewis County mother accused of killing her 3-year-old daughter stood before a West Virginia judge for the first time.

Investigators say Lena Lunsford hit her daughter Aliayah in the head with a hand held, solid object inside their home in September 2011. Deputies say he took steps to conceal the child’s body and instructed others to not tell the truth about what happened. She’s also accused of not getting Aliayah medical attention, and refusing to allow others to help her even though it was obvious she was hurt.

Aliayah’s disappearance launched a massive investigation. Her body has never been found.

After authorities said witnesses came forward, police arrested Lunsford in Florida where she had been living.

The Lunsfords lost all parental rights in 2013. At a hearing in 2012, a circuit court judge found “that the parents had more knowledge about Aliayah’s whereabouts than they revealed but refused to provide that information to the court.”

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