The state cited three exceptions justifying the search and seizure of the home at that time: 1) law enforcement isn’t required to show probable cause when action is immediately necessary to protect human life, 2) there was an objective standard of reasonableness to enter, given the facts and circumstances of the case and 3) consent was given by someone authorized to provide consent, allowing Texas Rangers to enter the home without a warrant.
The state called its first witness, who was the lead detective on the case and is now a sergeant. He explained all the events leading up to Texas Rangers entering the home.
He recalled how he was first notified of the disappearance of Broussard and her newborn on Dec. 12, 2019. He explained the case became a high priority after speaking with the baby’s father, Shane Carey, and learning items necessary to care for a newborn were still at Broussard’s apartment. There were also medical concerns, due to the baby having jaundice.
The sergeant then stated multiple agencies got involved, including the Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Rangers and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as well as a number of local agencies and nonprofits. The FBI also deployed its Child Abduction Rapid Deployment Unit and set up a command post at an Austin Police Department office in south Austin, according to the sergeant.
He explained how Fieramusca became a person of interest after speaking with Carey, who told him at the time a friend of Broussard’s had a pregnancy around the same time, but there weren’t any pictures of the baby. A search for Fieramusca’s Facebook page found the account had been deleted, which the former detective also found to be unusual, given the timing.
The sergeant told the court officers went to the hospital where Broussard’s baby was born, and nurses told them they remembered Fieramusca being there and wanting to hold the child before the actual family could.
The detective said video footage obtained by APD showed Fieramusca’s car at Broussard’s apartment and confirmed the car was driving in from Houston to Austin on the day of the baby’s birth.
The sergeant recalled a neighbor at the apartment complex stated she saw the same car on the day they went missing, where a white woman was seen holding a baby and getting into the car and driving off.
Texas Rangers stopped a man, Chris Green, who was buying baby products. Green said he was previously in a relationship with Fieramusca, and they still lived together. Green stated Fieramusca had just gotten home with their newborn baby on the same day Broussard and her baby went missing in Austin, according to the sergeant. When Texas Rangers showed Green a picture of the missing baby, Green confirmed that was the same baby in Fieramusca’s home.
Defense: Texas Rangers searched home of woman accused of killing friend, kidnapping baby without warrant | KRQE News 13