HOUSTON A small memorial of candles and flowers lay in the parking lot of a Woodlands-area pediatric center Wednesday, a day after deputies say a woman shot a young mother so she could kidnap the victim s 3-day-old baby.
Kala Golden and her newborn son, Keegan Schuchard, had gone to the Northwoods Pediatric Center in the 25000 block of Borough Park Drive Tuesday afternoon for a checkup.
Investigators say when Golden and her baby were returning to their truck after the appointment, they were confronted by 30-year-old Verna McClain, a licensed vocational nurse who recently suffered a miscarriage.
Investigators say McClain shot Golden several times, grabbed the child and took off in a Lexus.
Golden was rushed to Memorial Hermann in The Woodlands, where she died.
Deputies found McClain and her vehicle at an apartment complex off Sawmill Road, where she reportedly confessed to the crime and told them where the baby was.
Texas Rangers found Keegan unharmed around 8:15 p.m., with McClain s sister at a home off FM 1960. Investigators said McClain presented Keegan to her family as a baby she intended to adopt. Apparently, McClain did not tell her fiance when she suffered a recent miscarriage, so she wanted to get a baby and present it to her fiance as his child, investigators said.
The crime left Houston-area residents stunned and looking for answers.
Neighbors who live near the home where the child was found said they knew something was suspicious when Texas Rangers showed up Tuesday night.
I see a baby, and I was actually in the house on the Internet and had actually seen the Amber Alert about the kidnapping. And I see the baby, and the Texas Rangers put the baby in the back of the ambulance, and I sort of pieced it together, Frank Johnson said.
Johnson described thescene as surreal.
I m thinking, this is crazy. I m thinking, this doesn t really happen every day in the city. I mean, you hear about a lot of shootings and other types of crime, but somebody kidnaps a baby, 3 days old, and the mother to be shot? I mean, that s serious stuff that s really scary, Johnson said.
Johnson s wife, Amanda, said she was grieving for the young mother and all that the Golden and Schuchardt families lost.
I feel so, so, so terrible for the family and the baby that will never get to know his mother, she said. That s really sad. I can t imagine. I have an 8-year-old. I can t imagine not being able to see him grow up. It s really said.
On Wednesday, near the small memorial in the pediatric center parking lot,area residents expressed shock about what happened there just a day before.
Just because you can t have a baby, there s many people out there that can t have babies, and they deal with it every day. It doesn t mean you go out there and you steal one and you kill somebody to get one. It s horrible. People don t do that. They don t need to do that, Bryce Pizzonia, who lives near the center, said.
People just don t care anymore. I do, Lindsey Craig, another nearby resident, said. It s just a tragedy, and I think everyone, whether they knew them or not, should be praying for that family and for the future of that baby.
Meanwhile, Keegan was released to unnamed family members Wednesday as his father, Keith Schuchardt, worked to get custody.