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‘Pure Evil’: Woman Found Wandering with Dead Toddler Son Accused of Beating His Head Against Sidewalk, Cops Say

Woman Accused of Beating Son to Death on Sidewalk, Carrying Body
Source: Bel Air Police Department; Unsplash

Gloria Hughes allegedly beat her son to death on the sidewalk and then walked around town carrying his body, police said.

Dec. 6 2023, Published 10:03 a.m. ET

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A woman in Maryland has been arrested after she allegedly beat her 3-year-old son to death on the sidewalk behind a self-storage business and then wandered around with his body, law enforcement officials said.

Around 5:30 a.m. on Dec. 3, officers received a report about a cardiac arrest involving a child near the self-storage company in Bel Air after an off-duty deputy spotted 37-year-old Gloria Elena Hughes carrying her lifeless boy in her arms, according to the Bel Air Police Department.

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Medics tried to revive the child, identified as Jason Garcia. He was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead, officials said.

According to court documents obtained by WLBT, Hughes allegedly was seen on surveillance video recovered from the self-storage company banging her son’s head against the sidewalk several times. The documents claim the footage allegedly shows her grabbing the child's legs and slamming him onto the ground.

“It’s just heartbreaking," Bel Air Police Chief Charles Moore told WLBT. "If there’s evil, that’s pure evil. That’s pure evil when you see something like that, and it hurts all of us.”

Court documents show that a day earlier, a Bel Air resident reportedly saw Hughes in a car with the toddler crying. The resident tried to intervene, but Hughes allegedly told the person to leave her alone before she drove off, the documents state.

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According to WMAR, Hughes came to Maryland from North Carolina amid a custody battle with her son’s father.

After her arrest, investigators learned that the father had previously contacted authorities to alert them that Hughes could be leaving North Carolina and heading to Maryland with the child.

Police also determined that Hughes took the boy to a local emergency room on Dec. 2, the day before the deadly incident. The boy was allegedly treated for ingesting a boric acid suppository, which is commonly used to treat yeast infections, WMAR reported.

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Hughes was arrested and she currently faces charges of first-degree murder, and felony child abuse resulting in death, officials said.

She was being held without bond at the Harford County Detention Center and ordered to undergo a competency evaluation, officials said.

During a recent court appearance, WMAR reported that Hughes was disoriented and unable to tell the judge what day it was and why she was there.

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