Thief steals ashes of woman's infant daughter in Hollywood

Infant's remains placed inside special teddy bear, mother says

By Tim Swift - Local10.com Digital Editor, Louis Aguirre - Anchor/Reporter

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. - A Hollywood woman is asking for help after someone stole a teddy bear containing the ashes of her infant daughter from her front porch.

"I can’t even function," La'Quinta McKinney told Local 10 News reporter Louis Aquirre. "It's a lot. Like, I've lost so much in the past two years. I can't afford to lose anything else."

McKinney said she was moving from her apartment in the 300 block of North 61st Terrace on Monday and placed some her belongings on her front porch while she went to retrieve a U-Haul van. When she returned, someone had rifled through her bags and taken the bear and other items.

"They just came in. They didn't care about anything," McKinney said. "They just ripped through my stuff like, you know, it was theirs.

Her 2 -month-old daughter, La'Vae, died in 2016 of sudden infant death syndrome. She said she placed LaVae's ashes in a special teddy bear to keep her daughter's memory alive.

Two-month-old La'Vae McKinney (right) died in 2016 of sudden infant death syndrome.

"My first thing was, 'Find my baby, find my baby,' and I was just going through stuff and continued to look through the bags, and I looked, and I lost it," McKinney said.

Hollywood police said they are investigating the theft.

McKinney said she doesn't care about the other items stolen. She just wants the teddy bear returned.

"Whoever has it, I'm not mad at you," she said. "I mean, I know that you don't know what it means to us, but that is our family. That's my kid's sister. That's my child."

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