HOUSTON (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — The remains of a child found in Arkansas last week are those of a missing 4-year-old Texas girl, Maleah Davis, a medical examiner said Monday.
The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences said it had positively identified the remains, which were flown to Texas from Arkansas, where they had been found near a freeway outside the town of Hope.
Derion Vence, the man who was arrested in connection with Maleah’s disappearance, told community activist Quanell X he had disposed of her body there. Quanell X, who advocated for Maleah’s mother, Brittany Bowens, told reporters Friday about the new information he claimed to have received from Vence.
“All I can say is he told me it was an accident, and that she is dead and where he dumped her body,” Quanell said. “He said he pulled over in Arkansas, got out of the car, walked off the side of the road, and dumped her body off the side of the road.”
The institute of forensic sciences said the cause and manner of her death are not yet determined.
Vence, the ex-fiance of Maleah’s mother, remains jailed on a charge of tampering with evidence.
Vence, 27, had claimed he, Maleah and his 2-year-old son were abducted on May 4 by a group of men in a truck. He said he and his son were freed the next day but the kidnappers kept Maleah and his silver Nissan Altima. Police said Vence’s story kept changing and didn’t add up.
Police arrested Vence and charged him with tampering with evidence, specifically a human corpse. He remains jailed on a $40,000 bond.