Smyrna woman pleads guilty in 2019 murder of 3-year-old daughter

SMYRNA, Del. – The mother of a three-year-old whose remains were found behind a softball field in 2019 has pleaded guilty to murder.

On Thursday, Kristie Haas pled guilty to first degree murder by abuse or neglect for killing her daughter, 3-year-old Emma Cole. Additionally, she pled guilty to three counts of endangering the welfare of a child and one count of abuse of a corpse.

On September 13, 2019, Smyrna Police officers responded to the Smyrna-Clayton Little Lass Softball fields for a report of a child’s remains being found. The discovery sparked a multi-jurisdictional investigation into the child’s identity and the circumstances surrounding her death. After more than a year of investigation, the child was identified as Emma Grace Cole. At the time of her death, Emma lived with her mother Kristie Haas, her stepfather Brandon Haas, and her siblings.

Haas was indicted in 2021 following a lengthy investigation. Sentencing will follow at a later date. Haas faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison. As part of the plea agreement, Haas will agree with the State’s recommendation of 30 years in prison.

Categories: Crime, Delaware, Local News