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Feb 7, 2013 9:11 AM by Q2 News

Mother charged with second degree murder for the death of her 3-year-old daughter

BILLINGS-Mary Agnes Leider of St. Xavier was charged with second degree murder for the death of her 3-year-old daughter Tenielle Big Day. 24-year-old Leider made her initial appearance in United States District Court on Wednesday morning.

During the appearance, Leider waived her right to a preliminary hearing. The date for a detention hearing has yet to be set. Leider is being held at the Yellowstone County Detention Facility.

Big Day died the morning of December 3, 2012 from blunt force trauma. Court documents say Leider threw her daughter from a moving pickup truck along Highway 313 between Hardin and St. Xavier.

Court documents filed by Gary LaMere Jr., Special Agent with the Bureau of Indian Affairs, alleges the following:

Shortly after 4 o'clock that morning, Deputy Wallis with the Big Horn County Sheriff's Office responded to a 911 call at mile marker 11 on Highway 313 south of Hardin. The deputy found Leider along with her brother Arland Leider sitting on the side of the road crying.

Mary Leider told the deputy her baby was "gone," and was hit by a vehicle. Deputy Wallis was then dispatched to mile marker 19 for a 911 call regarding a deceased 3-year-old child. The deputy met with Georgina Denny and her son Wally Leider. Georgina Denny is also the grandmother of Big Day and the mother of Mary and Arland Leider. Denny took Deputy Wallis to her car where Big Day was placed and appeared to be dead.

Denny told authorities that Mary, Arland and Wally Leider were out "partying" during the evening of December 2, 2012 and had taken Big Day with them. After failed attempts to contact Mary Leider to come home with the child, Denny says she drove around searching for Mary and her daughter. Denny came upon Mary's pickup truck along highway 313, it was being driven by Wally Leider, who said there was something wrong with Big Day.

Denny saw Big Day in the back seat of the truck and realized she was not breathing and not responsive. Wally told Denny that Mary threw Big Day from the truck. When she picked up Big Day, Denny saw blood coming from the back of her head. She called 911 and put the child in her car.

Through an interview with Wally Leider, law enforcement learned he was driving Mary's pickup while she was seated in the front passenger's seat with Big Day on her lap. While traveling south towards St. Xavier, Mary opened the front passenger door and threw Big Day out of the moving pickup. Wally says he then stopped and went back down the road to where Big Day was lying. He says he picked up the child and placed her in the back seat. He left Mary and Arland at the scene and began driving home.

Mary Leider was taken to Hardin Memorial Hospital to have her blood drawn. FBI laboratory analysis reveals her blood alcohol level was .24. While at the hospital, she alternated between saying "I killed my baby" and claiming her and her brothers were in a car wreck, which is how Big Day died.

Mary admitted she was driving around and drinking with her brothers and claimed she hit her face on the dashboard and could not recall how Big Day was injured.

Through analysis, it was discovered the pickup truck doors were functioning properly and the truck had not been in a wreck prior to the child's death.

If found guilty, Mary Leider can face up to life in prison, a $250,000 fine and 5 years of supervised release.


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