A woman in South Carolina has recently been convicted of killing her newborn daughter over three decades ago. Stacy Michelle Rabon, now 50 years old, suffocated and stabbed the baby just hours after her birth before disposing of the body in a river. On Friday, the jury in York County found Rabon guilty of homicide by child abuse in the tragic 1992 death of the infant. The baby was known as “Angel Hope” by the community.
The discovery of the newborn’s body occurred on August 12, 1992, when an 18-year-old man swimming in the Catawba River found a floating “Sears shopping bag” between Rock Hill and Fort Mill. Inside the bag, he uncovered the lifeless body of the baby, who appeared to have been stabbed to death. The newborn had been wrapped in a sheet.
The case had gone cold for years until investigators recovered DNA evidence from the sheet used to wrap the baby before she was discarded in the river. The DNA led authorities to Rabon, whose genetic profile was in a national criminal database due to a previous drug conviction. When questioned, Rabon admitted to giving birth to a baby girl inside a van on August 12, 1992. However, she claimed that she had given the newborn to a couple for adoption. She did not readily confess to the baby girl’s murder.
Sheriff Kevin Tolson expressed gratitude towards the investigators and DNA analysts who played a crucial role in closing this cold case after so many decades.
The impact of this case on the community was significant, with community members choosing to name the unidentified child Angel Hope instead of using the typical “Jane Doe” moniker. Angel was laid to rest at the Forest Hills cemetery, with the community generously covering the expenses for the ceremony and burial.