On October 8, 2020, at approximately 8:07 p.m., a patrol officer was flagged down by a citizen requesting help for a child that was not breathing.
The child was transported to an area hospital for treatment. Later, officers were summoned back to the hospital at the request of Child Protective Services. Due to the type of injuries the child sustained abuse was suspected. On October 11, 2020, 1 year-old Zariea Dixon was declared brain dead and removed from life support.
Homicide investigators assumed control over the investigation. Through the course of their investigation, detectives identified a suspect and obtained an arrest warrant.
On June 17, 2021, 31-year-old Paul Hardy was arrested in Georgia. On July 2, 2021, Hardy was extradited to Baltimore and transported to the Central Booking Intake Facility.