Missing Santa Cruz girl found dead; teen suspect in custody

28 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Body believed to be missing California girl, 8, found.

Friends and family members scoured the artist community where she was last seen on Sunday afternoon, when she vanished while pushing her brand new scooter in a purple dress and black bicycle helmet. “This is extraordinarily heartbreaking news I’m about to give to you,” said Santa Cruz Police Chief Kevin Vogel during a late-night news conference. “This evening at approximately 7:55 p.m. … our detectives discovered the body of a young female inside of a dumpster at the complex located behind me.” That’s because the person taken into custody for questioning in the still mysterious child slaying is a 15-year-old boy — a 15-year-old boy who lived in the same complex as Maddy. “We have arrested and taken into custody a 15-year-old male who was on the property at the time of the discovery,” Vogel told reporters.An 8-year-old California girl was found dead in a dumpster Monday night, about 24 hours after she disappeared near her home, and a 15-year-old neighbor has been arrested in connection to the killing, police said.Eight-year-old Madyson Middleton has not been seen since Sunday at around 5:30 p.m. when she was recorded on surveillance video riding her white Razor scooter outside the Tannery Arts Center where she lives with her mother, the Santa Cruz Sentinel reports. She was wearing a black helmet, purple knee-length dress with black leggings, and her hair was pulled to the side in a braid. (TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries.

What is already clear, however, is that her community, which banded together to search for Maddy, is showing strains and assigning blame now that her body has been found. “As heinous as this was, we felt like a cohesive community” at first, Cartabiano told The Post. Jordan walked the edges of the courtyard, and police twice conducted a door-to-door search of the entire complex, as well as a homeless resource center and shelter across the street. Authorities didn’t send volunteers onto adjacent hiking and biking trails for fear of disturbing potential evidence, but hundreds of volunteers showed up and looked for her in neighborhoods and streets. Before the gruesome discovery Monday night, the search for Middleton included several local law enforcement agencies, more than a dozen FBI agents and about 200 volunteer residents. The agency provided $1.9 million, with the vast majority of the project coming from state or federal housing grants and Artspace, the Seattle nonprofit that built the project.

The girl’s parents cooperated with police and had been in contact with the Polly Klaas Foundation, a nonprofit group dedicated to finding missing children. Police planned to examine the crime scene overnight, and sealed off a residence at the apartment complex, Vogel said. “Our hearts are broken and our deepest sympathy to the family of Madyson Middleton,” the CHP station said. ”We are grieving with the entire Santa Cruz community.” Developers billed the TAC as a “first-in-the-nation art community that provides a sustainable, accessible and vibrant home for the arts in Santa Cruz County.” Privately, however, Tannery residents complained that the city wasn’t doing enough to protect the arts campus, which still sat in a questionable neighborhood. “It’s a lot of hard work,” said Cartabiano. “We’re a place of transformation. It’s getting better bit by bit, but it’s still there.” And so it was that when Maddy Middleton went missing on Sunday, the search quickly escalated from the Tannery to the surrounding neighborhood and then to all of Santa Cruz. “Are we still going to allow all the drifters and fugitives to sleep and live long term here?” asked one man in the comments section of an article about Maddy’s disappearance. “Are we going to continue to allow them to camp by the river, in view of the Tannery, further jeopardizing public safety? I pray they find here before any more harm is done.” “Hundreds and hundreds of people were looking for her,” she said. “You couldn’t throw a rock without hitting somebody looking for her night and day.” Maddy’s parents spent all Sunday night looking for their daughter and frantically speaking to investigators.

The search soon expanded to the San Lorenzo River and up and down the coast. “This is our town, and this just shouldn’t happen here,” volunteer David Giannini told the AP. “We all should do everything we can to find this girl.” “We actually had people look in this area so I don’t know” how we missed her, said Cartabiano, who, like her neighbors, had assisted in the search. “I don’t want to get too graphic but I imagine that she was really hidden.” “We love this guy. All of us if you ask us what you think of him we’d tell you he’s an outstanding kid,” she said. “He was always in there to help with environmental cleanup.

So it’s a very unfortunate circumstance, to say the least.” Police haven’t said how Maddy died or what motive the 15-year-old suspect might have had. And it feels just like it did that night.” “We are confounded why they wouldn’t go to their parents or go to the office,” she said of the suspect or suspects. “There are so many of us here to support them.”

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