Authorities in rural Washington state waited for the snow to melt before returning to the rocky hills where hunters found the body of a little girl missing for nearly a decade.
Investigators scoured a patch of land near Ellensburg over the weekend where hunters found the remains of Lindsey Baum in September 2017. The 10-year-old girl vanished on her way home from a friend’s house in 2009, officials said. She was found more than 180 miles east of her McCleary home.
Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office led the search Saturday in terrain that Undersheriff Clay Myers described as “steep, heavily timbered with large cliffs and deep ravines.”
After last year's gruesome discovery, law enforcement searched the region 20 miles west of Ellensburg — not knowing whose remains were found or the circumstances leading up to the death.
Vintage crime photos from the Daily News
Vintage crime photos from the Daily News
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The FBI did not identify the remains until recently, Grays Harbor County Sheriff Rick Scott told reporters Thursday.
Scott, whose jurisdiction includes the small town where Lindsey lived, said the body was not associated with a criminal probe at the time of the find and not a priority for federal agents.
The case is now a kidnapping and homicide investigation, he said.
It was not immediately clear when Lindsey died or when her remains were left in Kittitas County. A suspect in her death was not identified.
She disappeared during a half-mile walk home the night of June 26, 2009, about 20 miles west of Olympia. Lindsey’s mother, Melissa Baum, staunchly denied that her daughter ran away during the initial search.