FIRST ON 6: Woman arrested 15 years after dead babies tossed down trash chute

Posted at 3:05 PM, Jul 02, 2013
and last updated 2013-07-03 19:15:10-04

LAWRENCEVILLE, Va. (WTVR) - More than 15 years after the bodies of two newborn babies were discovered in a Virginia college dorm, a woman has been arrested for their murders, police confirmed to CBS 6 senior reporter Wayne Covil.

Police arrested Darnesha Paulita Berry, 35, Tuesday at her Henrico workplace. Lawrenceville Police Chief Everette Gibson said investigators believe the woman, a Henrico resident, was the mother of the slain babies.


Darnesha Paulita Berry

Last month a grand jury indicted Berry on two counts of first-degree murder. She is now being held without bond.

Investigators said tips following a 2012 cold case story that aired on CBS 6, along with DNA evidence, led them to Berry.

Investigators added that Berry, who is now married and the mother of three children, lived in the St. Paul's College dorm where the babies were killed, but was not considered a suspect at the time of their deaths.

The children, born alive in a dorm bathroom on Feb. 16, 1998, were killed and then thrown down the trash chute, police said. Berry would have been age 19 at the time.

"I just couldn't believe that someone had thrown these two children away," Lawrenceville Assistant Police Chief Benny Newcomb said in a 2012 interview about the cold case. "It's one of those cases that a police officer has in his career that haunts him."

Click the video box below to watch Wayne Covil's story from 2012.