Teen Girls Who Ran Away From Arizona Group Home Found Dead

Two Arizona teens who ran away from a group home in Mesa were found dead over the weekend in a water retention basin.

Mesa police say they suspect foul play, Arizona’s Family reported.

Sitlalli Avelar, 17, and Kamryn Meyers, 15, were reported missing on January 7 from a Mesa group home run by Powerhouse Youth Facility, which has been operating for 12 years. The Mesa facility, however, only opened last October.

A Powerhouse attorney told Arizona’s Family that the two girls, who had a history of running away from group homes, were overheard talking about leaving the day before they were reported missing. Staff at the home tried unsuccessfully to convince them to stay.

The attorney said the staff followed protocol for notifications, and met with police again on January 10 when the girls had not returned. He said the facility cannot force children to stay.

Mesa police said a man walking his dog spotted one of the bodies in the retention pond at about 6 p.m. on Saturday and notified police. He thought what he saw was a mannequin, but officer confirmed it was a body then spotted a second body a few feet away.

Investigators said it appeared the bodies had been in the water for some time and that determining cause of death could take weeks.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Mesa police nonemergency line at (480) 644-2211

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[Featured image: Kamryn Meyers and Sitlalli Avelar/handout]