Saturday, June 6, 2009

5-year-old Nevaeh Buchanan

Home > U.S.
Police Believe Child's Body Encased in Cement Is Nevaeh
Police Have Named Sex Offenders Persons of Interest in 5-Year-Old's Disappearance
June 5, 2009

Police believe the body of a little girl who was recovered from a cement covered grave on the banks of a Michigan river is that of 5-year-old Nevaeh Buchanan.
missing girl

Police have named two sex offenders, Roy Lee Smith, inset left, and George Kennedy, inset right, as persons of interest in the disappearance of 5-year-old Neveah Buchanan.
(ABC News)

The body, discovered Thursday by fishermen, was wearing a shirt that matches the description of the clothing Nevaeh was last seen wearing before she disappeared from the parking lot of her Monroe, Mich,. apartment complex on May 24.

"We have reasonable suspicion that this is the body of Navaeh," Monroe County Sheriff Tilman Crutchfield said during a press conference this morning, adding that the body "in appearance appears to be the same age, size and sex of Nevaeh Buchanan."

An autopsy will be done today to confirm the identity and determine a cause of death, but Crutchfield said there were no visible signs of abuse. The body, he said, had been buried along the River Raisin "for awhile."

He declined to comment specifically about how the body was buried only that it had some type of on the top. He also would not say what else investigators recovered from the grave.

When Nevaeh's mother, Jennifer Buchanan, was told about the body, "she broke down, and broke down hard," Michael Buchanan, her brother, told the Associated Press.
Missing Girl's Mom Had Sex Offender Friends
WATCH: Man Questioned in MI Missing Girl Case
Frightening Evidence in Missing 5-Year-Old Case

"She couldn't believe her daughter had to go through this," he said, adding that if it is Nevaeh's body it provides "some type of closure, even if it is for the worst."

Nevertheless, the little girl's grandmother, Sherry Buchanan, told ABC affiliate WXYZ Thursday night that she refuses to believe it until she's got proof.

"Until they have DNA testing through [Neveah's mother] and match the blood type and eveything and make sure ... I'm just holding onto that thought in my heart," she said.

Buchanan told WXYZ-TV that he had asked police for a picture of the body, but her request was denied.

Backing away from previous statements naming two sex offenders as persons of interest, Crutchfield would not comment on any suspects. George Kennedy, 39, and Roy Lee Smith, 48, both said to be acquaintances of Nevaeh's mother, are being held on probation violations simply for being associated with a child.

Crutchfield said Jennifer Buchanan was cooperating with police, but would not comment when asked if they believe she knows something about the crime or who murdered her daughter.

The murderer, he said, could still be free in the community.

"In my opinion it is a very sick or disturbed person we are looking for, a person who is able to abduct and murder an innocent 5-year-old child," he said.

Nevaeh memorial signs reflect anger


The makeshift memorial outside 5-year-old Nevaeh Buchanan's apartment has grown since the discovery of a little girl's body Thursday -- and the message has turned political.

"Capital punishment," read signs taped to the tent that protects dozens of stuffed animals, cards, balloons and candles near Nevaeh's front door.

"Majority of this country has it, Michigan needs to have it and they should start with the person(s) responsible for this tragic loss.

"Why should this person be allowed to live?" the flyers conclude.

While the body found along the River Raisin has yet to be positively identified as Nevaeh, word that it's likely the girl who's been missing since May 24 has stirred anger and anguish throughout the rural communities that surround Monroe.

"What baby deserves that?" asked Monroe resident Cheryl LaPierre, 43, who brought her son Jimmy to drop off a stuffed bear and dog at the memorial.

"I don't let him go anywhere no more," she said of her 8-year-old. "It's sad."

She and Jimmy -- who said he picked out the stuffed animals because he thought Nevaeh would like them -- said a short prayer this afternoon before leaving.

Authorities said Nevaeh's family might go this weekend to the Wayne County morgue, where the girl's body underwent an autopsy Friday, to positively identify her. Family members said Nevaeh never had X-rays taken of her teeth so dental comparisons aren't possible.

According to AOL:

The body was found Thursday under cement along the banks of the River Raisin in Monroe County, about 7 miles from Nevaeh's home. Investigators hope autopsy and toxicology test results will confirm a cause of death. There were no obvious signs of violence to the body, Crutchfield said.

The body appeared to be buried in a shallow grave, said Andrew Arena, special agent in charge of the FBI's Detroit office. Investigators were returning to the river's edge Friday to look for more evidence.
The discovery of the body suspected to be Nevaeh should allow investigators to focus on finding the person responsible, Crutchfield said.
That person "to our knowledge is still out there in the community," he said.
When the girl's mother, Jennifer Buchanan, was told about the body, "she broke down, and broke down hard," said Michael Buchanan, her brother.

"She couldn't believe her daughter had to go through this," he said, adding that if it is Nevaeh's body it provides "some type of closure, even if it is for the worst."
At the apartment complex where Nevaeh lived with her mother and grandmother, about 100 people showed up Thursday night. A makeshift shrine included a large sign with a drawing of Nevaeh's face encircled by a heart: "Nevaeh, we will find you." Another read: "We miss you. Please come home."
The body was discovered by two men out fishing.

No comments:

Post a Comment