Shannon Dedrick’s mom pleads to misdemeanor charge

I had written about the Shannon Dedrick case earlier: a baby, given by her mother to another woman who kept her hidden in a small, unventilated box for hours and hours before the baby was rescued. That woman was Susan Elizabeth Baker, the stepmother of Paul Baker, and the prime suspect in his 1987 disappearance.

Susan was convicted of three felony charges earlier this month in connection with Shannon Dedrick’s kidnapping. Well, yesterday, Shannon’s mother, Chrystina Mercer, pleaded no contest to one misdemeanor charge of providing false information to the police. This is almost exactly one year since Shannon’s disappearance. Chrystina got the max, 364 days in jail, but with credit for time served, she was released immediately. She got off easy. She had been facing much more serious charges, but the substance of those were the statements of Susan Baker, whose reputation for honesty is, shall we say, questionable.

Shannon is now in a foster home. Her father has surrendered his parental rights and Chrystina isn’t allowed to have contact with her at this time.

Where is Paul?


The Miami Herald
The Panama City News Herald