Police: Human remains found are those of missing Iowa 10-year-old, Breasia Terrell
DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - The search for Breasia Terrell has come to an end after officials say they have found her remains.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Davenport Police Chief Paul Sikorski said an autopsy on human remains found recently in DeWitt was conducted and it was confirmed the remains were those of the 10-year-old Davenport girl.
“As you know Breasia’s been missing since July 10 from our city,” Sikorski said. “This news is heartbreaking to both Breasia’s family and our Davenport community. Our deepest sympathies and heartfelt prayers are with all of those who are affected by this tragic loss.”
This comes after a heavy police presence was seen in DeWitt last week. A TV6 crew arrived shortly after 8 p.m. March 22, and saw officials blocking 270th Avenue between 210th and 218th streets just east of Highway 61 and south of Kunau Implement Co.
Officials with the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office, Davenport Police Department and the Division of Criminal Investigations announced that following Tuesday they were investigating after human remains were discovered.
On Wednesday, Sikorski confirmed the missing person case for Breasia is now officially a homicide investigation.
“We know our community is anxious for information regarding the investigation and any charges that may be forthcoming,” Sikorski said. “We also understand the desire to see the perpetrator of this crime brought to justice.”
Sikorski said in order to “maintain the integrity” of the investigation he would not be able to discuss any specifics regarding the investigation.
“This investigation continues to be a joint investigation by the Davenport Police Department, the Division of Criminal Investigations from the Iowa Department of Public Safety and our partners at the FBI,” Sikorski said. “I can assure our community that investigators are working diligently to bring justice on Breasia’s half. Again, they have been nonstop for the last nine months. I want to assure our community that when we are able to share details on this investigation we will.”
President and CEO of Family Resources in Davenport, Nicole Cisne, expressed the organization’s “sincere condolences for Breasia’s family” and wanted those close to Breasia to know it’s not their fault.
“The loss of Breasia will create a ripple effect of trauma throughout our entire community,” Cisne said. “Our entire community will feel this tragic loss. We want our community to know that you do not have to deal with this loss alone. Even if you did not personally know Breasia or her family, you may still feel grief over this loss and need support.”
Police named 48-year-old Henry Dinkins as a person of interest. He was arrested on unrelated sex offender registration violations.
In December, Chief Sikorski told TV6 the case remained active and open.
“Anything and everything is important,” Sikorski said. “And I really want to make that push for our community to please, no lead is too small. We need to find her. That’s the bottom line.”
The AMBER Alert was then canceled in January of this year.
According to Mitch Mortvedt, the Assistant Director of the Field Operations Bureau for the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, the AMBER Alert was canceled because of the length of time that had passed.
The FBI had announced their involvement in the case and offered a $10,000 reward for information that led to locating Breasia or the arrest of someone who was involved in her disappearance.
Police on Wednesday said no tip is too small and they encourage the community to come forward if they have heard or seen anything.
“Anything that our community even thinks could be related to this, whether it’s in Clinton County or right here in Davenport, or somewhere in between,” Sikorski said.
Sikorski said they’ve looked into hundreds of tips and over the last week following the discovery of Breasia’s remains, he said more community members have come forward with tips.
“We still need you,” Sikorski said. “We still need your help. If you think you saw something or heard something please contact our investigators.”
Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to call the Davenport Police Department at 563 326-6125, submit an anonymous tip via the “P3 Tips” mobile app, or submit a tip online at “qccrimestoppers.com”.
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