A woman who pretended for months she was pregnant allegedly lured a new mother to her home, shot her twice in the head and then hid the body in her basement, passing the boy off as her own.
Prosecutors charged Kimmi Hardy with first-degree murder on Monday, saying she bought a gun a month before the slaying, wore maternity clothes for about five months, and even held a baby shower after the killing.
She told her husband she had given birth at home, and he apparently believed her, investigators said. But her plans came undone when a guest at the shower noticed the child was not a newborn, and called police.
Robert Hardy, 36, who prosecutors plan to charge as an accessory, told police his wife shot Theresa Lund, 34, a month ago in their basement and hid the body in a crawl space, according to court papers filed Monday.
Hardy told police he wasn’t home during the slaying, but later helped his wife get rid of the body and hide evidence.
On Friday, Hardy led authorities to Lund’s body, which was found along railroad tracks less than 10 miles from the Hardy home.
Kimmi Hardy had bought a handgun on July 31, asking a dealer if a particular gun was “capable of killing someone, and if so, at what range,” court papers said.
Lund and her 6-week-old son were reported missing after her car was found in a store parking lot on Aug. 28. That same day, Kimmi Hardy, 36, told friends and family she had given birth to a son, court papers said.
Police, acting on the baby shower guest’s tip, found the child at the Hardy home on Sept. 18. When confronted by officers, Kimmi Hardy said she bought the baby for $3,000.
But footprint records showed the boy was Paul Lund, born July 16. Police charged her with child stealing, purchasing an individual and third-degree kidnapping - and worked the case until her husband confessed.
Judge Gary Noneman set Kimmi Hardy’s bail at $2 million.
Lund’s mother, Velva Green of Keokuk, said she had feared the worst when her daughter disappeared.
“Her kids were her life,” she said. “She put them before everyone else. She didn’t believe in baby sitters and she never left her children alone.”