Update 7:30 p.m.:
Searchers in a helicopter on Sunday located the body of a small child matching the description of a missing Grand Junction toddler believed to have wandered away from home the previous evening, Denver 7 reports.
The body was found in a canal near where 3-year-old Adelesia, who answers to the name of Addie Rae, was last seen. The Mesa County Coroner’s Office will release the name of the child once identification and notification of next of kin are complete, the station said.
Authorities in Mesa County, Colorado, began draining the Grand Valley Irrigation Canal on Sunday as they searched for a 3-year-old girl who they believe wandered away from her Grand Junction home the previous evening.
The Mesa County Sheriff’s Office said the girl, whose name is Adelesia but answers to the name Addie Rae, was last seen at about 6 p.m., wearing a tan shirt with an orange fox and orange and blue pants.
Dozens of volunteers and deputies began searching within 15 minutes, but suspended the search when darkness fell. They searched several miles along the canal and found evidence Addie Rae had been near it.
The sheriff’s office said draining the canal is a slow process and will likely take 48 hours for the water level to be low enough to search. In the meantime, searchers will continue in the surrounding community.
#Alert Irrigation users, please be advised your water may be shut off today. Make sure your irrigation systems are…
Deputies said the circumstances of Addie Rae’s disappearance “did not meet the qualifications to issue an Amber alert,” which is issued when a child is believed to have been abducted and is in danger.
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[Featured image: Addie Rae/Mesa County Sheriff’s Office]