CRIME

Relative Of Missing Texas Girl Taken Into Custody After Remains Found

“He is the only suspect we have at this time," authorities said of Kayla Gomez-Orozco's family member.
Kayla Gomez-Orozco, 10, was last seen on Tuesday.
Kayla Gomez-Orozco, 10, was last seen on Tuesday.

A family member of a missing 10-year-old East Texas girl has been taken into custody after a body believed to belong to the child was found in a well Saturday, authorities announced.

The young man, whose name and exact relation to Kayla Gomez-Orozco has not been released, is being held in the Smith County jail on an immigration detainer. Authorities say he is around 24 years old. 

“He is the only suspect we have at this time. He has not been arrested for the homicide,” Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said at a Sunday afternoon press conference, where authorities declined to provide specifics into the case. “I think we’ve got a good motive but we’re not going to release it right now.”

KHOU previously reported that an uncle of the child was being questioned in the case.

Smith said an investigative lead pointed them to the Bullard property, about 100 miles southeast of Dallas, where the suspect lives. There, between two homes, authorities found the child’s body inside of a well.

Kayla’s family reported her missing Tuesday following a prayer service at Bullard First Assembly Church. The child was last seen in the building’s lobby around 7:30 p.m., authorities had said.

An Amber Alert was launched and the case was transferred to the FBI’s Dallas office the next day, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said.

This story has been updated to include information from Sunday’s press conference.

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