By Patrick Klinck
NIAGARA FALLS, NY (WGRZ) - Niagara Falls Police said just before noon on Monday that missing five-year-old girl Isabella Sarah Tennant has been found dead. Police have a person of interest in custody. He is 16-years-old.
Tennant had last been seen at her great grandmother's house on the 400 block of 6th Street Sunday night. The search ended in an alleyway between 3rd and 4th streets in the City of Niagara Falls.
Investigators say Isabella was last seen at 11:58 p.m. Sunday night by a neighbor who was visiting the great grandparent's home. That neighbor was taken to police headquarters for questioning, and later held as a person of interest in the case.
At a press conference Monday afternoon, police said the boy was, as far as they could tell, "a trusted family friend." The girl was left in his custody when the great grandmother went to bed at about 10:30 p.m.
A family member told 2 On Your Side's Claudine Ewing that the grandmother was known for trying to help troubled kids in the neighborhood, and that the 16-year-old now in police custody had been a frequent visitor to the home.
Police said the girl's body was found in a garbage bag in a garbage can in the alley. They were tipped off to the location of the body by a second 16-year-old. No weapon was recovered but there were indications of trauma, according to the police spokesperson.
The 16-year-old will likely be charged with murder in the second degree, which carries a term of 25 years to life. The arraignment will happen Tuesday morning.
The child would stay with her grandmother while her mother, who lives in Cheektowaga, was working at her job at Player's nightclub in Niagara Falls.