COLUMBUS – The Bartholomew County Prosecutor has filed charges against 39-year-old Jeremy Sweet, the father of 2-year-old Emma Sweet. Emma’s body was pulled from the East Fork of White River on Sunday.
Sweet is facing charges of neglect of a dependent resulting in death and unlawful possession of a syringe. He is being held in the Bartholomew County Jail on a $1.2 million bond. Sweet had been out on bond at the time of this arrest on charges of unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon as well as possession of methamphetamine.
Emma’s body was found around 11 a.m. Sunday, submerged in a debris pile about a half of a mile from the location of where Emma’s cream color jacket with butterflies on it that was found on Saturday, roughly two miles downstream from where her father’s truck was found on Friday.
Both Emma and Jeremy were reported missing on Thanksgiving Day by Emma’s mother. They were both last seen in Jeremy’s black pickup truck.
On Friday, November 26th, around 6 a.m. duck hunters discovered a truck partially submerged in the river off of a farm lane near the 1700 block of Blessing Road near Beatty Lane. Inside was Emma’s father, Jeremy Sweet, of Columbus, but his daughter was nowhere to be found. The area where the truck was found required going off-road, around barriers, and down a 15 to 20-foot embankment into the river.
Jeremy Sweet suffered exposure and hypothermia. He was taken to Columbus Regional Hospital for treatment. After being released from the hospital on Monday he was taken to jail where he was held on a 72-hour hold until charges were filed on Wednesday.
Emma Grace Patricia Sweet, 2, of Columbus passed from this life on Sunday, November 28, 2021, at 10:58 a.m.
Emma was born on August 29, 2019, in Columbus the daughter of Jeremy W. and Linsey M. O’Neal Sweet.
She attended Lil’ Stars Daycare and enjoyed competing in local, state, and national pageants with America’s Best Pageants where she won the Baby Miss Bartholomew County 2021 and was the current Tiny Miss Bartholomew County 2022. Emma appeared in many magazines and enjoyed modeling for Little Luna’s out of Seguin, Texas, which made handmade clothes. She belonged to Model Mavens Pageant Studio and loved spending time with her coaches, Coach Chelsea and Coach Tashanda. Emma always loved dancing with her daddy, and in her 2 years here she made it to some fun places… she went to Disney World to see her favorite Minnie Mouse recently, some of her other favorite places were Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Holiday World.
Emma loved her brothers and was known to rule the roost with them, however, they would do anything for her. She always loved being barefoot or wearing her crocs, dancing, the Baby Shark song, eating fruit- especially the strawberries, bananas, and blueberries, and wearing her hair in pigtails. Emma loved her momma so very much and would get so very excited when she pulled up to pick her up at daycare.
Survivors include her parents, Jeremy W. and Linsey M. Sweet of Columbus; siblings, Bentley Sweet, Elijah Sweet, Destiny Sweet, and Brayton Fields all of Columbus; grandparents, Melodee (Rick) Hand of Columbus, Dennis O’Neal of Columbus, Inita Sweet of Columbus; aunts and uncles, Bryan O’Neal of Columbus, Larry (Robin) Sweet Jr. of Alabama, Krystie (Dewayne) Petro of Scipio; cousins, Guy and Lyla O’Neal, Jacob and Larry Sweet, Kenneth, Rebecca, and Corey Petro; and a niece, Gabriella Pettit.
She was preceded in death by her grandfather, Larry Sweet; cousin, Ricky Petro; and great grandparents, Harry Jr and Patricia Gaskill and Gilman and Betty O’Neal.
In keeping with the family’s wishes cremation will take place and a memorial service will be held on Saturday, December 4th at 12:00 p.m. at Barkes, Weaver & Glick Funeral Home on Washington Street with Rev. Marcus D. Speer officiating. A live stream of the funeral service may be viewed at 12:00 p.m. Saturday at barkesweaverglick.com.
Family and friends may call for visitation from 10:00 a.m. till the time of the service Saturday at the funeral home.
Memorial contributions may be given in memory of Emma through the funeral home to Bartholomew County Sheriff Department, America’s Best Pageant System, Bartholomew County Toys for Tots, or any first responder organization of donor’s choice.
Online condolences and special memories may be shared with the Sweet family and a video tribute viewed at www.barkesweaverglick.com.