Gun, baby seat found in search for kidnapped newborn

MCSO: Verna McClain charged with capital murder

Published On: Apr 20 2012 10:40:03 AM CDT   Updated On: Apr 21 2012 10:29:06 PM CDT
MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas -

A search warrant obtained by Local 2 Investigates reveals the evidence investigators found while searching for a newborn who was kidnapped when his mother was shot to death.

Kala Golden Schuchardt, 28, was gunned down after taking her three-day-old son, Keegan, to the Northwoods Pediatric Center in Spring on Tuesday afternoon. That clinic reopened on Friday.

People have been leaving bouquets of flowers at the site as part of a makeshift memorial.

Verna Deann McClain, 31, has been charged with capital murder.

McClain made her first court appearance on Thursday. She was assigned two attorneys.

McClain is being held without bond. A bail hearing will be held on Monday.

Schuchardt's funeral has been set for 2 p.m. Tuesday at the First Baptist Church, 12177 Interstate 45 in Willis.

Defense attorneys said that McClain did not know what she was doing and they are planning a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity.

"She is emotionally distraught," attorney Stephen Jackson said. "She doesn't understand a lot of what's going on. She's very confused as to where she's at, why she's there."

Detectives said McClain is in a single cell and is under a 24-hour suicide watch hold. Investigators said they believe she acted alone.

Montgomery County sheriff's deputies said McClain did not know Schuchardt and was planning to present the child as her own after a miscarriage.

"The investigation so far would indicate that this was a random choice," Capt. Bruce Zenor said. "I think she knew the patterns at the pediatric center where she was at because she had taken her children there in the past."

Records showed that McClain, a licensed vocational nurse, admitted to shooting Schuchardt and taking her son. After taking the newborn, McClain told her sister that she now had the child and was ready to start the paperwork to adopt him, according to court records.

Detectives said McClain told them recently had a miscarriage, but she told her fiancé that she had given birth to his child.

"She needed to justify to her soon-to-be (husband), they were going to get married in May," Zenor said. "She told him she was pregnant and had given birth to a child, by him."

Keegan is white. McClain and her fiancé are black.

"She represented this as her child," Zenor said.

Zenor said the child was never presented to McClain's fiancé.

Multiple sources connected to the investigation have said that detectives are having trouble pinning down specific information about that miscarriage, including when it happened or where she was treated.

Jackson declined to comment about the miscarriage claim.

The healthy 3-day-old infant was found around 8 p.m. Tuesday. Investigators said McClain took Keegan to her sister's home along Sugar Pine Drive in Harris County.

Children's Protective Services officials said that Keegan was turned over to his maternal grandmother. He is not with his father, Keith Schuchardt, for several reasons. He has not yet signed his son's birth certificate. CPS said it is checking into the family's home life and Keith Schuchardt's criminal background, which includes a drug charge. Officials said they were also waiting for drug test results before the father could have custody of Keegan, which was standard procedure.

Kala Marie Golden Schuchardt also had 2- and 4-year-old sons.

Suspect Found Hours After Shooting, Kidnapping

Deputies found the car used in the kidnapping at the Fawnridge Apartments on Sawdust near Sawmill, about a mile from the shooting scene, a few hours after the attack. Investigators said McClain returned to the complex and approached them, claiming to have information about the vehicle.

"She knew from the media that we were looking for that specific vehicle and she knew she was associated with that," Schmitt

Schmitt said McClain acted as if she was trying to be helpful in the investigation.

"We did not approach her or interview her as a suspect at that point," Schmitt

Schmitt said McClain's story started to fall apart during her interview as a witness.

Detectives said they have recovered a .380-calber pistol and magazine were inside McClain's sister's apartment. Investigators said the bullets used to kill Schuchardt were .380-caliber. The pistol magazine was found in a rice cooker box and the .380 caliber handgun was found on a shelf in a hall closet.

According to a search warrant, a white infant's sock was found on the front porch, a baby seat was found in the master bedroom and a blue rag with stars that had blood on it was found inside a basketball toy.

McClain's family left Jackson's office on Friday and declined to talk about the case.

"They're scared and confused," Jackson said. "They're just looking for a safe haven right now to protect the children."

Victim's Family Relieved At Arrest

Kala Golden Schuchardt's mother said she is happy that a suspect has been caught.

"But that doesn't bring my daughter back," Linda Golden said. "There ain't nothing that's going to bring my daughter back."

Linda Golden described her daughter as a good person.

"She wouldn't fight or argue with anybody," she said. "She fought to protect her baby and (McClain) took her life for it."

Friends said they were saddened that Keegan will never know his mother.

"She never did anything wrong. She's just a mom doing her best to take care of her kids and I miss her," said long time friend Jennifer Hartis. "Keegan is only three days old. He's needs to know his mom and she can't do that now. "

Keith Schuchardt, said he has not yet told the 2- and 4-year-old boys that their mother is never coming home.

"It's going to be difficult because they're already asking about her now," he said.

He whispered a message to his wife, hoping she could hear him in Heaven.

"I love you," he said. "I wish you were here to help me through this."

A barbeque benefit for the Schuchardt family was planned for Saturday starting at 10 a.m. It will be held at the Willis Youth Athletic Association at 13551 Rogers Rd. in Willis.