The mother of Bella Bond told police that she knew her daughter was dead when she entered the 2-year-old’s bedroom one night when she was fussy and would not go to sleep. The little girl’s head was swollen and her face was red.
Rachelle Bond’s boyfriend, Michael McCarthy, was standing over the child. He allegedly told Bond that “she was a demon anyway and it was her time to die,’’ state prosecutor David Deakin said Monday in Dorchester Municipal Court.
McCarthy and Bond both pleaded not guilty Monday to their roles in the child’s death. McCarthy was charged with murder and held without bail. Rachelle Bond was charged with accessory after the fact to murder and held on $1 million bail.
Both were charged with improper disposition of a body.
Bond told police McCarthy threatened to kill her if she didn’t cooperate with him. After initially keeping the toddler’s corpse in a refrigerator — and spending a few days high on heroin — the pair weighted her body, put it in a bag, and dumped it into the waters off the South Boston Seaport.
It would be found on June 25 on the shores of Deer Island. Authorities spent months trying in vain to identify the brown-eyed, chubby-cheeked “Baby Doe’’ as tips poured in from around the world.
The break in the case finally came last week, when a friend of McCarthy’s and Bond’s went with the couple to Boston Medical Center for treatment, Deakin said. When Bond told the friend, Michael Sprinsky, that she was happy to get clean, he mentioned she would be glad to get Bella back.
Sprinksky had been told that Bella was in the custody of the state’s Department of Children and Families. That’s when Rachelle Bond started to cry.
“I’ll never see my daughter again,’’ she told Sprinsky, according to prosecutors. Bond then told the friend that McCarthy had killed Bella by punching the girl in the stomach and that she had helped dispose of the body.
Sprinsky took action. He confronted McCarthy, who insisted that Bella was in state custody. Soon after that, he spoke with authorities and helped them unravel Baby Doe’s identity at last. He told his sister, Laura Sprinsky, about what he knew and she called Boston police.
Reached today, Laura Sprinsky said she was glad that “Bella would get justice,’’ she said.
“I’m glad she has a name,’’ she said. “I’m glad she’s not Baby Doe and I’m glad I had a small part.’’
Michael Sprinsky told police that he had lived with Bond and McCarthy for a few weeks over the winter and witnessed the couple’s maltreatment of the girl, according to prosecutors.
They had locked the girl in the closet for 30 minutes to an hour while Bella screamed, the friend said. McCarthy told his friend that Bella was possessed by demons, and that is why she needed to be punished.
His account was in stark contrast to the loving relationship Rachelle Bond portrayed in Facebook posts about her daughter.
McCarthy’s attorney, Jonathan Shapiro, told reporters outside the courthouse that Bond is lying. He said his client believed that Bella Bond had been in state custody. McCarthy suffers from seizures and is a recovering drug addict, Shapiro said.
“The statements made by Rachelle Bond that he killed her daughter are totally untrue and are the product of her delusion and sick mind,’’ he said.
Bond’s attorney, Janice Bassil, told the judge that McCarthy “essentially held her captive and under duress’’ and that she immediately told someone what happened as soon as McCarthy went to the hospital.
Despite a lengthy criminal record, Bond had no issues with the court since 2011, Bassil said.
McCarthy and Bond are due back in court Oct. 20.
The arraignment was interrupted by onlookers who claimed close relationships with Bella. Megan Fewtrell, who claims to be Bella’s godmother, screamed that she hoped Bond and McCarthy would “rot in hell,’’ as court officers led her out of the room. Then a man named Joseph Amoroso, who claims to be Bella Bond’s biological father, jumped from his seat as McCarthy was being led out of court.
“Michael McCarthy, you’re done. You won’t last a day,’’ Amoroso shouted.
Fewtrell, 36, said she came to court to see her former best friend face charges. Fewtrell, who clutched a stuffed yellow duck that had belonged to the girl, said she had co-parented Bella with Rachelle.
“I can’t understand why she would help some man cover up the murder of her child, our child,’’ she said.
Fewtrell said she last saw Bond and Bella on March 12. After that, they had a falling out that she declined to elaborate on.
She said she called the tip line in July after seeing the composite image. She wasn’t sure if it was Bella, but the big brown eyes looked just like hers.
Fewtrell said she never heard back from the tip line. When she still saw Baby Doe’s image on billboards, she texted the tip line, she said. Ten days later, authorities identified the girl as Bella.
“She did have somebody out there looking for her,’’ Fewtrell said. “It was me.’’
She pulled the duck toward her face and breathed in. It still smells like her, she said.
The Baby Doe case: