VALPARAISO — The mother of a 3-year-old girl who died after she was found unresponsive in a pond Monday was arrested on a felony neglect charge, police said.

The girl has been identified as Tamira Billingslea, according to a news release from Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris.

Valparaiso police were dispatched at 9:26 p.m. Monday to the 2700 block of Roanoke Court after the girl was reported missing, according to a news release. 

The address is in the Williamsburg on the Lake apartment complex off Vale Park Road.

Valparaiso police, Porter County Search and Rescue, Fire Department personnel and a Porter County sheriff's K-9 began searching for the girl. 

The K-9 found her unresponsive at 10:12 p.m. in a pond. Valparaiso Fire/EMS staff began medical treatment and took her to Porter Regional Hospital, where she later was pronounced dead.

Harris said his office was dispatched to the emergency room of the hospital at 10:22 p.m. The child was pronounced dead at 11:22 p.m.

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Harris said the emergency medical services and emergency room staff "worked diligently" to save the girl. An autopsy is scheduled to be performed Wednesday morning. 

The girl's mother, Tasia L. Perkins, 32, of Valparaiso, gave police inconsistent statements about the amount of time her daughter had been missing before it was reported to police, Valpo police Sgt. Michael Grennes said.

Perkins was arrested and booked into the Porter County Jail early Tuesday on a felony neglect charge, according to police and jail records with formal charges pending. 

Valparaiso police, the coroner's office and Indiana Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police are continuing to investigate the incident.

Check back at nwi.com for updates to this story.

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Porter County Reporter

Joyce has been a reporter for nearly 40 years, including 23 years with The Times. She's a native of Merrillville, but has lived in Portage for 39 years. She covers municipal and school government in Porter County.