The body of a missing North Carolina toddler was found in a creek just hours after her mother’s live-in boyfriend was charged for allegedly hiding her body.
Onslow County Sheriff Hans Miller said divers recovered Mariah Woods’ body at 5:30 p.m. Saturday from the Pender County Creek, 25 miles from the toddler’s home.
Police did not reveal any other details about the case.
Mariah, 3, was reported missing Monday by her mother, Kristy Woods, who claimed she last saw her daughter when she put her to bed Sunday night.
Police issued an Amber Alert and Woods made emotion-filled pleas for the child’s safe return.
On Friday, however, police had determined the 3-year-old was dead and arrested Woods’ boyfriend, 32-year-old Earl Kimrey, in connection with her disappearance the next day.
Kimrey’s arrest warrant said Mariah’s body was moved from where she had died and that he allegedly knew she did not die of natural causes, ABC News reported. The warrant, however, did not say how the girl was killed.
"It was too late to save Mariah the moment the 911 call came in," said FBI agent Stanley Meador. "The arrest warrants are public record and the records speaks for themselves. We will not discuss any details related to the homicide investigation."
Mariah’s biological father, Alex Woods, expressed suspicion about what Mariah’s mother said happened during the search for his daughter.
“Somebody just walks right in there, grabs a 3-year-old out of the bed, she didn’t cry, she didn’t scream?” he told WTVR. “Nobody heard nothing? Four people in the house, two adults and two babies and somebody just comes, snatches the baby up and walks out?”
Kimrey, 32, has been charged with obstruction of justice, second-degree burglary, felony larceny and possession of stolen property.
Additional charges are pending, reports said.
He is being held on $1,010,000 bond.