The mother of missing Georgia toddler Quinton Simon declared she’s not hiding from the law and wants her baby boy found “happy and alive” as authorities have named her a prime suspect in the disappearance and presumed death of her son.
Leilani Simon and her mother Billie Jo Howell told WTOC-TV through tears Monday they’re holding out the hope that the tot who’s been missing since Oct. 5 isn’t dead.
“We want something great to come out of this but mostly we want him not to be found in that landfill,” Quinton’s grandmother said. “We want him found…
“Happy and alive,” mother Leilani Simon interrupted. “We want him back in our arms, holding us. That’s what we want.”
Authorities have been scouring a Chatham County landfill in their search for the remains of the 20-month-old child.
“We’re just hoping that he’s in somebody’s house and they’re feeding him and maybe they wanted a baby or couldn’t have a baby,” Leilani Simon said Monday. “Maybe they thought they were his savior. That’s our best hope at this point.”
No charges have been filed against in the high-profile case, though police have said they consider Leilani Simon, 22, to be the only suspect in his disappearance and suspected death.
“I’m here. I’ve been here every day since this. I’m not running and I’m not hiding. And if something does come up that I am at fault, I will take myself to that police station,” Leilani Simon boldly told WTOC.
She additionally told the news station she wakes up every day waiting for a phone call about her child.
“Every day that goes by it’s less tears and more anger, not knowing what’s happening, if that’s even understandable. You wake up every day, angry, hoping that you’ll get a phone call, and that phone call just doesn’t come,” Leilani Simon reportedly said.
The case has generated widespread publicity across the country with protests occurring outside Leilani Simon’s home. Four people were even arrested over the weekend for either blocking the Simon’s driveway or banging on the home’s windows and door, according to WTOC.
“It makes it hard to even process what’s going around us,” Leilani Simon told the news station.
“We get to the point where we have to barricade our own home in order to even feel safe in our backyard because we can’t even process what is happening everywhere else, or even have the time to do so.
“I can’t even walk out and appreciate my own son’s memorial or put down gifts that I got for him. I can’t even go out there and do that without harassment and negligence and everything. It’s just devastating to see that this is how the outside world reacts.”
Leilani Simon and her mother Billie Jo Howell were seen downing shots of tequila as authorities searched for little Quinton last week and Leilani has admitted to using drugs while pregnant with one of her three small children, court documents reportedly indicate.