A 7-year-old Georgia girl who was last seen in a playground near Atlanta is presumed dead after investigators found a body in a trash container.
Jorelys Rivera is believed to be the severely beaten body that was discovered, authorities said Monday. The girl appeared to have been sexually assaulted.
GBI spokesman John Bankhead said Monday that "everything points to it being" the 7-year-old of Canton. Bankhead said officials were awaiting results of an autopsy to confirm the identity and a cause of death.
He said the girl's mother had been notified.
The child was last seen around 5 p.m. Friday at the River Ridge apartments in Canton, about 40 miles north of Atlanta, Canton police Detective Candy Worthy said. Authorities had said they believed the girl was abducted and brought in a specialized team of law officers trained to handle child abductions.
Searchers had been combing nearby apartment buildings and surrounding woods.
Officers were also checking with sex offenders in the area, an effort that will be ongoing and possibly broadened as the investigation continues, Bankhead said. Searchers also handed out fliers at area businesses with a description of the girl.
Authorities did not issue a Levi's Call — the state's version of an amber alert — because officers didn't have any information about the girl's abductor, which is a requirement for issuing such an alert.
Based on reporting by The Associated Press.