The baby's ashes were kept in a silver necklace LeAnn Winn took off for safe-keeping while out with a friend

By Harriet Sokmensuer
August 02, 2018 05:21 PM
LeAnn Winn

What started as a fun night with her friend ended in heartbreak for a Connecticut woman who had a necklace stolen that contained the ashes of her deceased son.

On Saturday night, LeAnn Winn, of South Windsor, left her purse in her best friend’s car while the pair had a drink at a bar in Hartford, Winn tells PEOPLE. Inside the purse was a silver necklace containing the ashes of her 3-month-old son, Jayden Xavier Winn, who died in 2009.

“We both are single mothers so we never get a chance [to go out],” Winn says. “So we both got babysitters and we were like, ‘Lets go for an hour.’ ”

When Winn and her friend returned to the vehicle later that night, one of the car windows was smashed in. Winn’s purse, along with some of her friend’s belongings, were gone.

At first, she says, she didn’t remember taking off her necklace and putting it into her purse for safe-keeping. But the next morning, when she went to put on her purse, she remembered.

“It just hit me,” she recalls, adding that she feels “violated” and “devastated” by the loss.

The stolen silver necklace containing LeAnn Winn’s son’s ashes
LeAnn Winn

Immediately, she went back to the bar and canvassed the area. Nobody had seen the necklace. A day later, Winn says, she posted her story on Facebook.

“I am heartbroken and devastated that a part of my baby is out there somewhere and not with someone who loves [and] misses him,” Winn wrote on Facebook Monday, hoping her post would reach the perpetrator.

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LeeAnn Winn
LeAnn Winn

Since her first post on Monday, Winn has spoken to television stations across the country. She says that with the support of her 9-year-old son, who is the twin of the baby who died, and her 14-year-old daughter, she remains optimistic.

“I just pray [this] reaches the eye of the ones who were involved and they can lead anyone they feel comfortable with to my baby,” Winn wrote in another Facebook status update. “I do not care about any other belongings that were taken. I forgive who ever did this I just wont be whole again until he is back with me.”

Anyone with information is urged to call Hartford Police at 860-757-4000.