Memorial grows for young mother, infant found dead in Fulton

The house at 463 ½ S. First Street in Fulton / photo; Caitlin Nuclo

Thursday afternoon update:

Funeral arrangements have been announced for Jalit Richardson, the 25-year-old Fulton mother who was found dead in her home with her baby Tuesday afternoon.

A memorial service for Richardson and her child will take place at 2:00 Saturday afternoon at Fulton Alliance Church, located at 1044 State Route 48 in Fulton.

There will not be any calling hours. However, a memorial Facebook page has been created in Jalit's name.

Fulton Police said Thursday that they do not have a timeline on an autopsy for the baby. Police say Richardson died of a pre-existing medical condition.

Read Matt's Memo: Mother and Child, posted Thursday morning.

Wednesday night update:

Wednesday night, a small memorial formed with stuffed animals and flowers sits on the step of Jalit Richardson's Fulton home, as neighbors just begin to come to grips with the heart-breaking news.

"I feel for the family, I'm just so sad it had to happen to her. She was so young and she was a sweetheart," said Virginia Efaw who lives next door.

Neighbors say they remember the 25-year-old as a kind soul and say she worked at the local K-Mart.

The tragedy has quickly spread through this tight-knit community, just one day after the young mother, and her 2-month old baby girl were found dead.

"Such a young person and her child, it just doesn't get any worse than that," said Don Drogo.

From the start, police said the deaths did not appear to be suspicious. We now know Richardson died of a pre-existing condition but we still don't know for sure what claimed her daughters life. Investigators say it could be days, even weeks, until the infants medical examination is complete.

"I was upset, she was very nice. You would always see her walking her baby in the stroller," said Christian Efaw who lives next door and says Richardson was a counselor at his summer camp.

Tribute messages are pouring onto facebook in a special memorial page for Jalit.

Read below for our previous coverage of this story, including the official release from Fulton Police disclosing Richardson's cause of death.

3:00 p.m. Wednesday update:

Fulton investigators have now identified the cause of death in this case. Here is their full release:

As part of this ongoing investigation, the Onondaga County Medical Examiners Office has determined that Jalit Richardson died as a result of natural causes related to a pre-existing medical condition.

The findings in regards to her two month old daughter are still pending however there appear to be no signs of foul play.

CNY Central's Chris McGrath talked to police investigators this afternoon. Fulton Deputy Police Chief Thomas Abelgore said, "We got a call from a relative about that time who hadn't heard from the female in over a week. (That relative) went to the residence, discovered the bodies and called us."

Investigators went into the home and said it was in very good condition. Abelgore says, "She was very neat, from what we understand. She kept a neat house, everything was in order, there was no evidence of child neglect."

The cause of Richardson's death has not been released. Abelgore says autopsy results for the 2-month-old child aren't available yet, but he said she clearly couldn't have survived long after her mother's death.

11:00 a.m. Wednesday update:

Police have released a short statement Wednesday morning about the death of a Fulton woman and her infant child. Here's the full text of the statement:

On May 17, 2011 at approx 1:43 PM, the Fulton Police Department responded to a report of a possible unattended death at 463 1/2 S. First Street.

Upon arrival, officers discovered the deceased bodies of 25 year old Jalit Richardson and her two month old infant daughter inside the apartment. At this time, the deaths do not appear suspicious in nature.

However, the Fulton Police Department is continuing with its investigation into the incident and is awaiting a determination on cause of death from the Onondaga County Medical Examiner TMs Office.

Tuesday evening, Richardson's friend Beth Cunningham Giles left a comment on Facebook mourning her loss:

All I can say is that she was a wonderful loving person with a heart of gold and she had a beautiful smile that could light the room! She loved baby...sooooooo...... Much! It TMs very sad!

We have a crew in Oswego County and will have updated information on this story throughout the day.

Original coverage from Tuesday evening:

Fulton police are investigating the unattended deaths of a woman and her infant child.

Oswego County 911 received a call before 2:00 Tuesday afternoon, and police were on the scene for approximately five hours. The home that is now the focus on the police investigation is at South First & Lyon Streets near the Huhtamaki packaging facility. Neighbors tell CNY Central a hearse was seen leaving the home Tuesday afternoon.Investigators say there was nothing at the scene that looked suspicious, leading them to believe the deaths are not criminal in nature. Police say they are still trying to figure out how the mother and child died.

Fulton police say they are not revealing more information about the victims, or who placed the initial call for help, until they make more progress in the investigation.