Brittany Slaughter, 24, and Adam Hayes, 34, are each charged with murder, abuse of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence
Two people have been arrested in connection to the death of 4-year-old Kentucky girl Chloe Darnell, the Whitley County Sheriff Department announced in a Facebook post Friday.
Kentucky law enforcement says a body they believe to be that of the 4-year-old “has been recovered and sent to the state medical examiner’s office in Frankfort for an autopsy and positive identification,” according to the post. (A family member identified the deceased child as Chloe in a GoFundMe campaign earlier today.)
Brittany Slaughter, 24, and Adam Hayes, 34, are each charged with murder, abuse of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence, the sheriff’s department says, adding that additional charges may be filed in what remains “an active investigation.”
Slaughter had custody of Chloe, who had not been seen alive since late September, according to the sheriff’s department preliminary investigation.
Both Slaughter and Chloe had previously been reported missing from the Canada Town Community of Whitley County, the sheriff’s department said.
On Thursday, investigators seized a red 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer, which the sheriff’s department believes Slaughter had been using prior to Chloe’s disappearance.
The following day, authorities announced the arrests of both Slaughter and Hayes.
The GoFundMe campaign created by Tricia Hess, who identified herself as a relative of the family, described Chloe as “a bright happy child,” who was living with her aunt, Brittany Slaughter.
Hess identified Hayes as Slaughter's boyfriend.
“Family and friends were becoming suspicious because they were unable to see or talk with Chloe the past month,” Hess wrote.
She said the sheriff’s department conducted a wellness check Thursday and that Slaughter was located at 9 p.m. that night.
“During the night they searched the area around the house and surrounded woods and were able to locate Chloe's body,” Hess said in the post.
Hess said the money would be used to give the 4-year-old “a proper funeral and burial” and that remaining funds would be used to bring Chloe’s seven siblings into town for her funeral.
Anyone with information about the case may call Whitley County Dispatch at 606-549-6017 and ask for Case Officer Lt. David Lassiter, Unit 304, reference case number 23-118-0392.
If you suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.
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