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Indiana father arrested after allegedly shooting 9-month-old daughter

Anthony Lamont Meriweather initially told police that his daughter was hit by a bullet in a drive-by shooting. He later admitted to handling a gun when it went off.
Credit: Vanderburgh County Jail
Anthony Meriweather was booked into the Vanderburgh County Jail Friday night on the charge of neglect of a dependent resulting in death.

EVANSVILLE, Ind. — An Evansville man is in jail after allegedly shooting his 9-month-old daughter.

According to court documents, police were called to the 3900 block of Vista Drive at the Buena Vista Apartment Complex on Friday, Aug. 28 around 2:40 p.m. on reports of a baby not breathing.

Police said Anthony Lamont Meriweather, 20, told officers on the scene that the baby was hit by a bullet in a drive-by shooting but could not provide any further information. 

The documents say one of the officers found a shell casing on the bathroom floor while surveying the apartment.

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The lead investigator then spoke with a witness who lives at the apartment. The witness told police Meriweather came to the apartment to visit and brought his baby, who stayed in her car seat on the living room floor so the two men could play video games.

According to the documents, the witness told police he sleeps on the couch and keeps a firearm in the cushions of the couch. 

The documents say as the witness went upstairs while Meriweather stayed downstairs, he heard a gunshot. The witness told police he ran downstairs and saw the gun on the floor near Meriweather, who had a blank look on his face. Documents say the witness then took the gun upstairs to secure it out of fear for his safety.

The witness told police he went back downstairs and saw Meriweather pick up the baby from the car seat and saw blood coming from the baby's head.

Police said the baby was transported to St. Vincent hospital and was pronounced dead.

The documents say Meriweather later admitted to discovering a gun at the apartment and was handling it when it went off and struck his daughter in the face.

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According to the documents, Meriweather told police a neighbor called 911.

Meriweather was booked into the Vanderburgh County Jail Friday night without bond on the charge of neglect of a dependent resulting in death.

Coroner Steve Lockyear told NBC affiliate WFIE the autopsy shows the 9-month-old girl died from a single gunshot wound to the head and has ruled the death a homicide.

Meriweather's initial court hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 2 at 1 p.m.