On Wednesday, 6-year-old Bella Fontenelle of Louisiana was reported missing by her father Michael Fontenelle, who claimed his 43-year-old live-in girlfriend, Bunnak "Hannah" Landon had gone missing as well.
According to police, surveillance footage shows a woman matching Landon's description moving a large bucket Jennifer Zeledon's from lawn. Zeledon is Bella's mother. Her body was found in that bucket, reports the New York Post.
Zeledon's sister and aunt to the child, Bianco Cano, created a GoFundMe for her sibling and said, "Where do I start… my beautiful Bella… the world is so unjust. You were given to us for 6 amazing years. You were beyond perfection. Your beautiful little voice, your funny personality, the way you danced, the way you were so delicate and fragile, your smile, your laugh, the way you expressed yourself. I can go on and on about how amazing this little soul was."
"This senseless and heinous act has forever destroyed my family. No words can describe the pain that is running through our bodies. It’s truly inhumane," she added.
Zeledon lives in Harahan, a suburb of New Orleans, and according to Harahan Police Chief Edward Lepre, Landon came to the police after the crime asking for their help.
Chief Lepre told local Fox News, "She seemed a little bit out of it. She was asking for a transport so they called for an ambulance to come pick her up and once the ambulance came to pick her up, they transported her to a local hospital to be evaluated."
After Landon went to the hospital and was later discharged on Thursday, she was promptly arrested and charged with obstruction of justice and first-degree murder.
Chief Lepre said, "We’re going to work until the end to make sure we get a conviction. This is a small baby, and any family would be devastated. I can only imagine what the mother and father are going through right now."
According to authorities, Landon allegedly strangled and beat the 6-year-old to death, dumped her body in a 10-gallon bucket, and then wheeled the bucket over to the birth mother's front lawn.
Jefferson Parish Coroner Gerry Cvitanovich said the child died from "manual strangulation along with blunt force injuries to the head."
According to the New York Post, Zeledon and Landon had been in conflict since 2021, and on March 21 of that year the two women had a physical altercation at a swim meet.
One neighbor, Steve Morris, said the child "had the biggest smile. She was the first one that would approach you and share and just giggle."
"I would see the little girl and the older sister out in the driveway playing many times, riding their little bikes. The mother would sit out there with them. The grandparents would sit out there with them. It was just beautiful to watch," he added.
A church service was held for 6-year-old Bella Fontenelle, who attended St. Matthew the Apostle School.
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