AUGUSTA, Georgia. – The remains of a missing Georgia teen discovered in a shallow grave almost a year after her mother and stepfather were arrested in connection with her disappearance, authorities said.
The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office received a phone call Thursday from someone who found the bones in the backyard of a vacant Augusta house, Sheriff Richard Roundtree said in a news conference Tuesday. Authorities learned Monday that dental records are sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation confirmed the remains were those of LaTania by janell Carwell, news channels reported.
The 16-year-old had been missing since April 17, Roundtree said. Her stepfather, Leon Tripp, was arrested in DeKalb County on May 23 and her mother, Tonya Tripp, was arrested in Atlanta the same day.
In June, Carwell was supposed to be dead based on a statement from her stepfather made, Roundtree said. Leon Tripp was the last person seen with Carwell, and his statement prompted authorities to charge him with murder after he was charged with the kidnapping.
Additional charges were filed Tuesday in the indictments.
Against Leon Tripp said he is charged with first-degree 7/87/8cruelty to children for the cause of pain by binding limbs and Carwell death by unknown means, and other violations. The indictment against Tonya Tripp against her with second-degree murder and other crimes.
Both are imprisoned in Richmond County and it is unclear whether they have lawyers.