GAS CITY, Ind. (WANE) — A body of a 10-year-old Gas City girl who went missing Saturday was found early Wednesday, likely strangled, Indiana State Police said.
The stepmother of young Skylea Carmack has been arrested in the girl’s death.
Skylea was last seen Saturday afternoon in the 200 block of East South D Street in Gas City. A Silver Alert was issued, and at the time, police said she could be in extreme danger and may be in need of medical assistance.
The Gas City Police Department and members of the community passed out fliers as part of their search for the little girl.
The girl’s body was found around 3 a.m. Wednesday, state police said in a news conference later that morning. Her body was recovered in a shed behind her home, hidden in a plastic trash bag, state police said.
State police said 34-year-old Amanda Carmack, Skylea’s stepmother, was arrested on a charges of murder, neglect of a dependent, domestic battery and strangulation. She’s been booked into the Grant County Jail.
It’s not clear how Amanda Carmack was tied to her stepdaughter’s death. Police said the girl was likely strangled to death somewhere between 4:30-6:30 p.m. Saturday.
An autopsy will be performed to determine the girl’s exact cause and manner of death.
WANE 15 spoke with Skylea’s former stepmother. Holly Little says she was married to the girl’s father, Kevin. Little says she has taken care of Skylea from 7 months old, until about two years ago.
Little says when Skylea was a baby, she picked her up at the girl’s biological mother’s house. Little said Skylea should come live with her, and Kevin. The biological mother agreed.
Little says she remained having a good relationship with Skylea’s biological mother.
“I knew there was a problem, but I wasn’t allowed to see Skylea for the past 1 1/2 to 2 years. I have always been in Skylea’s life, regardless of whatever wife he had, regardless of anything, because you can ask any of the biological parents or anyone else, I am her mother. I raised her, and I love that little girl, and I’ve always been in her life. When the new wife came in, I was forbidden to have her,” says Little.
She describes Skylea as very sweet, and had good humor.
“She thought of everyone as family. I mean it didn’t matter who they were, no matter how long they were in their life, everyone was family to Skylea,” says Little
A vigil is scheduled for Skylea, Wednesday, September 4th at 7:30 p.m. It will be located at the Gas City Public Library.