Saturday, April 20, 2024

Devastating News: 11-Year-Old Girl Vanishes on Her Way to School

In a tragic turn of events, the lifeless body‌ of 11-year-old Audrii​ Cunningham, who had been missing from Texas, was discovered on Tuesday⁤ afternoon. Polk‍ County Sheriff Byron Lyons, ​in a somber press conference, confirmed that Audrii’s body ⁢was found in the Trinity River near the US Highway 59 bridge in Livingston.

Photo Credit: Fox News

Sheriff Lyons, visibly affected by ‍the grim discovery, promised to thoroughly process all evidence gathered to ensure justice for Audrii. Polk County District Attorney Shelly ⁢Sitton revealed that arrest warrants ⁣are being​ prepared for Don ⁤Steven McDougal, 42, in connection with Audrii’s disappearance,⁤ with the possibility of capital murder charges.

McDougal’s arrest on⁣ Friday, on unrelated charges of aggravated assault with ⁢a deadly weapon, raised suspicions as ‍investigators sought his cooperation in Audrii’s disappearance.⁢ Lt. Craig ​Cummings, spokesperson for the Texas Department of Public Safety in Southeast Texas, emphasized that McDougal,⁣ who was likely the last person to⁢ see Audrii, had been ⁣given multiple opportunities to cooperate.

Photo Credit: Fox News

During a press conference on Monday, ​Sheriff Lyons expressed concern about public speculation and urged people not to jump to conclusions. Audrii was supposed to⁤ board her school bus on the morning of February 15, but she never ⁤made it, leading to ‍a series of investigations⁢ that ultimately led to this tragic discovery.

McDougal, who lived ⁣in a camper behind⁢ Audrii’s residence, was known to occasionally take her to the bus ⁢stop or even to school ​when ⁤she missed the bus, according to Audrii’s mother, ⁤Cassie Matthews, in an interview with FOX 26 Houston.

Photo Credit: Fox News

Efforts are underway⁢ to piece ‍together McDougal’s movements on ​the morning of February‌ 15, with Sheriff Lyons revealing that McDougal has agreed to show investigators certain locations after his arrest.

The gravity of the ‌situation prompted a statewide Amber Alert on February 16, intensifying​ the search for Audrii. Sheriff Lyons later acknowledged⁣ the likelihood that a backpack found in a wooded area near the Livingston Dam belonged to the⁤ young girl, adding another layer to the ongoing investigation.

Photo Credit: Fox News

McDougal’s extensive ⁣criminal history, dating back to the early ⁣2000s, includes charges ranging from child enticement to ⁣assault⁣ of⁣ a family member and evading arrest. As investigators delve into ⁢his past, they are⁢ appealing to the public to submit any video footage of ⁢FM 3126 ‌in Polk County between 6:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. on February 15, in hopes of​ gaining crucial insights into this tragic incident.

The community is grieving the loss ​of Audrii Cunningham, and​ as authorities ⁤continue to‍ investigate, they are ‌seeking support from the public to uncover ⁢the circumstances surrounding this heartbreaking incident.

Sources: Fox⁤ News

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