Investigators have confirmed the worst about missing 4-year-old Maleah Davis.
Officials with the Harris County Institution of Forensic Scientists in Texas said Monday that remains discovered in Arkansas belonged to her, according to ABC News. Authorities are still trying to determine the cause and manner of her death.
Davis was reported missing on May 3. Her mother’s fiancé Derion Vence claimed to have been attacked by three men. He said that he woke up to find that Maleah was gone, Houston police said in a press conference. Officers later determined that this story was fabricated. They arrested Vence for allegedly tampering with evidence. Investigators claimed that cadaver dogs responded to the trunk of the Nissan Altima that Vence had ostensibly been driving during the purported abduction. The vehicle also contained a gas can, and a laundry basket. Vence was previously seen carrying that basket from his apartment, cops said. It had been full, authorities said.
Through a spokesman, Davis’ mother Brittany Bowens said that she broke up with Vence shortly before Maleah went missing. She was out of town during the disappearance to be with her dying father, cops said.
The optics surrounding Bowens are complicated right now. She split with spokesman Quanell X, claiming that he lied about details of the case. For his part, Quanell X said she covered up Vence’s abuse of Davis. It was Quanell X who claimed on Friday that Vence confessed to killing Maleah in an “accident.”
Vence’s new attorney Dorian Cotlar disputed that there was ever a jailhouse confession.
“My client did not confess to Quanell,” he told The Houston Chronicle. “He did not use the word ‘accident’ with Quanell. Quanell makes his living off of reward money.”
[Image via Houston Police Department]