Baby Elaina's mother Angela Steinfurth faced a judge Thursday morning for a preliminary hearing regarding her involvement in the 18-month-old toddler's endangerment and disappearance.
In a video of the arraignment, Steinfurth is seen sobbing beside her public defender, who quietly instructed her not to talk to anyone in jail. Steinfurth nods, crying, before moaning something that sounds like "No," or "Home." After the judge sets her bond at $250,000, Steinfurth's eyes widen. Her face crumples and she repeats the number under her breath.
As Steinfurth is led from the courtroom, someone offscreen shouts, "I love you, Angie!"
"I love you, too," she sobs, followed by something unintelligible.
What was Baby Elaina's "serious injury"?
Authorities have been tightlipped regarding what they know about baby Elaina's condition. The day after Elaina was reported missing, her father's description of the toddler included that she had hit her head and it had left a mark. But authorities have not confirmed whether they believe this is the "serious injury" that Steinfurth neglected to have treated.
A source told WNWO that the baby had a black eye, a bump on the head, and a bloody nose. Frank, who asked that his last name not be revealed, described what Elaina's mom Angela told him.
"[Elaina's mother] told me about the baby having a black eye, a bump on the head and just a little bit of dry blood around the nostril. But I was like well what's that all about? And she said that when she woke up the baby was like that. I said well why didn't you call ... take her to the hospital or call the police or whatever? She told me that she asked Steven, the boyfriend, to check on the baby to make sure the baby was okay medically. The boyfriend overlooked [sic] the child and said she was going to be fine."
In an interview on June 4, two days after Elaina was reported missing, Angela Steinfurth appears to refer to Elaina's injuries. "She has problems and the only way they're gonna get handled is if me and her father can do it for her."
Does Angela Steinfurth know where Baby Elaina is?
Authorities have not revealed whether they believe Angela Steinfurth knows where Elaina is. When asked at a press conference, "Do you have reason to believe that she knows where the baby is?" a spokesman for the police department declined to comment.
Police are, however, collecting evidence. Julie King, the owner of the house where Angela Steinfurth was staying with an ex-boyfriend and two children, including Elaina, said authorities searched her home and another home her family owns and uses for storage. They reportedly confiscated about seven bags full of items along with her van, which King's son had used to pick Angela Steinfurth and her children up the night they went missing.
Was Angela Steinfurth's boyfriend abusing Elaina and her sister?
Baby Elaina's father told Nancy Grace that Angela Steinfurth had told him she was uncomfortable with the way her boyfriend Steven King was treating the children. However, King has not been named as a person of interest in the case.
Elaina's father is not the only person in Steinfurth's circle to claim that conditions in the King house were possibly less than child-friendly.
"I definitely think that there was some kind of drug problem," said Mary Schiewe, the half-sister of Angela Steinfurth, adding that she didn't know if it was the case with everyone in the house. Schiewe said King was taking some type of medication usually prescribed to people coming off of drug addictions.
Schiewe also repeated the account of Elaina's bloody nose and black eye.
"I just know that -- I wanna say it happened Saturday night -- that they knew about the black eye and the blood coming out of her nose. And then Sunday I did hear that they went to a Family Dollar around the corner and went shopping. I don't know for what, I just know that they were there."
When Schiewe questioned her half-sister, she was brusquely rebuffed. "I had talked to the detectives that day ... so I figured, maybe I can sit down and talk with her, and I came home and asked her if she wanted to talk. She said she was done talking and she didn't have to answer to nobody, that she had answered enough questions."
Is Baby Elaina alive?
The baby Elaina case is still being investigated as a missing person case.