Joseph Christy and Summer McDaniel charged with child neglect and may face more charges after admitting to the burial of an infant in Hardy Co.
Joseph Christy and Summer McDaniel charged with child neglect and may face more charges after admitting to the burial of an infant in Hardy Co.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — State Police say a Missouri couple is jailed on charges of child neglect, but could be facing much more serious charges after a bizarre weekend discovery.

Morgantown police officers observed Joseph Christy, 32, and Summer McDaniel, 26, both of Maryville, Missouri in a stolen vehicle at the Sheetz convenience store in Sabraton Saturday. The couple fled when confronted by officers.  The vehicle had been reported stolen in Iowa.  The pursuit went onto I-68 and I-79 before the pair was finally stopped.  Each was charged with child neglect because their four children, ages 11, 7, 4, and 2  were in the vehicle at the time of the pursuit and none of them were buckled up.

The two were questioned individually after their arrest and police made a startling revelation.

“There were some interviews conducted and information was obtained that Mr. Christy and Miss McDaniel had buried an infant child in the George Washington National Forest in Wardensville, West Virginia,” said West Virginia State Police Spokesman Lt. Mike Baylous.

State Police in Hardy County were alerted to the information and were led by Christy to the burial site.

“They were able to locate the burial site and did discover the remains of an infant child there,” said Baylous.

The child’s remains were sent to the state Medical Examiner’s Office to determine a time and cause of death. For now, the pair face no charges in connection with the child’s death, but those may be pending depending on the findings of the medical examiner.

“I don’t know who said what, but there was some kind of indication about why the baby was buried,” Baylous said. “We have to wait and see what the medical examiner determines is the cause of death and the approximate time of death before we make a decision on how to proceed with this.”

Meanwhile, the couple remains in the North Central Regional Jail on $60,000 bail each on the child neglect charges.

Baylous said the two appear to have lived all over and are largely transients. Their most recent address was Missouri, but Christy had also lived in Colorado Springs, CO where he was wanted on outstanding warrants.

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  • neutral

    I think judging & hate is causing our world so much as it is.
    I am a close friend of the mothers family.
    No, I do NOT approve of what happen nor do I think there is a good enough excuse but there is more to the story and tossing out hateful words is not solving nothing.
    It is not the school, social worker so n so or that person.
    We as a society failed again. Another child, another 26 day old baby is left as a statistic my great nephew
    . Open our eyes and spat words to help a child not wait til it is all a tragedy.
    Pray, Pray for the children.

  • Shannon

    The children were placed into foster care in West Virginia and I happen to know the home they were placed in. They are in a MUCH better place but their recovery will be a long one. They know that the baby died and watched it being buried. They are great children and God will watch over them.

  • amanda

    My heart goes out to these children may god bless them with a better life than the one they had

    • Shannon

      I happen to know the foster home these children where placed in and they are very blessed and in a MUCH better place!

  • Missy

    Wow and this one is close to home....... What kind of ppl would kill an innocent child and then put their other children in danger as well?! Makes me sick to my stomach!!!!! I hope these two a$$holes get whats coming to them ten fold..... Sick ppl I swear! Rott in hell to ya both!!!!

    • GRIFF

      the kind of people that come to WV where they are eligible for welfare


    Just how many dead beat parents are going to be allowed to have children??? & then kill them!!! DHHR is just a bunch of well paid office losers!!! who do nothing when a report of child abuse is trial is necessary they confessed. hang them because they will kill again!!!

    • Jonus Grumby

      Were there reports of child abuse in this case? If there were not, exactly how is DHHR involved?

  • Gary Karstens is wrong for a loving, caring homosexual couple to adapt babies but at the same time, this horrific heterosexual couple can reproduce on demand. YEESH!

    • Bound to happen

      Holy crap! I actually agree with you for once. I got a little vomit in the back of my throat, but it was bound to happen. I'm sure we differ on my opinion. After a suitable amount of induced suffering-shoots the bastards.

  • Mistie

    This is a sad life for the innocent children that were in the vehicle. Hopefully they can recover from the things they did or may have witnessed. The "parents" long as they don't get the kids back, that will be a step in the right direction for some justice. I would venture to guess that this pair will be hard pressed to find someone to bond them. He is already a fugitive from justice, they were in possession of a stolen vehicle from Iowa so there would be additional fugutive charges, possible charges from Hardy County for burying the baby. At times, there has to be more work to accurately articulate additional criminal charges. This couple needs to have justice served on behalf of the infant but until all of the puzzle is put together from medical findings, the unknown cause and time of death won't be known. At this point, there is still a possibility that the actual "death" could have occurred in another state.
    I say thanks to law enforcement for possibly saving the lives of 4 other children, hope the kids never get returned to these criminals and receive the care and comfort they need and deserve.

  • judy

    I don't believe in the death penalty.anyways that would bea easy way out.let them rot in prison.what's this world coming too?

    • Molon Labe


      More like work out,watch tv, hang out, lay in bunks, eat honey buns, surf Facebook.......

  • dreamcatcher4abusedchildren

    Ok so there only charged with "NEGLECT" did I miss read something here ? Did it not say a pursuit ocurred with 4 children in this car ? Wow so what happened to CHILD ENDANGERMENT ? I'm sure there gonna get a slap on the wrist,meanwhile my only son sit's in prison 5-25 yrs for accusations & had his proof to defend himself,which wasn't accepted by the system !!! Yep that's the way WEST VIRGINIA ROLLS and if HARDY CO. gets them I'm sure they will be getting a lessor charge then these charged with lessor crimes & are innocent,I can already see so with there Bail !!!!!!!! The system isn't to blame it's the people who are in it that need more education on criminal justice!!!!!

  • wvproud

    So sad I try and try to have babies and can't and they want a fortune to adopt they could've given the baby to a family in need of one or something sad I just don't know what the world is coming too

  • Medman

    Drugs plus alcohol and this is what you get with some of the invincible young heathens today. It seems to me that drugs may be the one thing that brings this country down, not the terrorists or any foreign enemy.

    • Hillbilly

      I agree totally , just wait until they legalize the Gateway drug pot .

  • Justice!!

    Totally sick! Anyway to only get charged with child neglect?!. Wow we have an awesome justice system! Totally ridiculous! Put this case to the top of the lists. Make them pay!

  • Be slow to judge

    Shouldn't you all wait or a cause of death before injecting the parents in the death chamber? Seems like they are innocent until proven guilty to me. If it was so clear cut, they would be charged with a more serious crime and have a much higher bond. Use some common sense; we don't hang people based on metronews stories.

    • Jeffrey

      they do it all the time in the good old USA

    • Jonus Grumby

      Agreed. Finally the voice of reason. However, if they are found to be responsible for the child's death, I will join the chorus and ask for their heads on a stick.

    • GRIFF

      IF they were innocent they wouldn't have buried the baby in the woods. keep them in reg prison population, let Bubba & Bertha be their best friends

  • Justice!!

    Hang them in the heat, light a fire and burn the sobs slowly until they die... Any let the crow pick at the remains! Sick sick sick!

  • Roger

    I say dust off "Old Sparky", the once used electric chair that was in Moundsville, and put it to good use. I'll volunteer to throw the switch, in fact I would love to. Trash like this have no rights to continue to walk free, and thats probably what will happen to them, more or less.