— The Onslow County Sheriff’s Office and the FBI made an arrest late Friday in connection to the disappearance of Mariah Kay Woods, 3, missing since Monday. They charged 32-year-old Earl Kimrey with concealing a death, among other charges, although Mariah has not been found.
Kimrey, who was in the Onslow County Detention Center on a $1 million bond, faces charges of concealing a death, obstruction of justice, second-degree burglary, larceny and possession of stolen property. Family members said Kimrey lived in the home with Mariah and her mother; photos on Facebook show the pair together with Mariah.
State records show Kimrey had previously been charged with a series of small crimes dating back to 2005. Kimrey's previous charges include larceny, assault and drunk and disorderly conduct, according to the state's online records.
In a statement issued just before 2:30 a.m. on Saturday, the sheriff's office said that information gathered in the search for Mariah led authorities to believe she is dead, although no body has been recovered.
"At this time, the location of Mariah is unknown. The searches will now shift to a recovery process," the statement said.
Mariah's mother told the Onslow County Sheriff's Office that she last saw her daughter at their family home, at 2404 Dawson Cabin Road in Jacksonville, on Sunday night when she put her to bed.
She called the sheriff's office around 6 a.m. Monday to report her missing, and an Amber Alert was issued that day.
Since then, professional investigators and volunteers have fanned out across the woods near her home, neighbors have been asked to search their property and a dive team has searched a portion of Southwest Creek under U.S. Highway 17.
On Thursday, the FBI said "items of interest" were taken to Marine Corps Base Quantico, outside Washington, D.C., for testing.
In an update to the media Friday afternoon, Sheriff Hans Miller said that he had a "long conversation" with one of Mariah's family members, and added that "they are cooperating."
Mariah's parents are divorced, and her father, Alex Woods, said that while his daughter is living with her mother, his week had been "like hell, like a nightmare."