Police believe that Taryn Summers was murdered, but that her two young relatives who were also missing are now safe

By Steve Helling
April 16, 2021 04:32 PM
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Taryn Summers
Credit: Gem County Sheriff's Office

Idaho authorities believe they have found the body of Taryn Summers, the 8-year-old girl who went missing on Monday, and a suspect has been arrested for murder in connection with the case.

Taryn, along with relatives Tristan Conner Sexton, 16, and Taylor Summers, 14, were all last seen in the small Idaho town of Emmett on separate dates, according to the Gem County Sheriff's Office, who added that all three lived in the same home. Tristan vanished in September 2020, and Taylor disappeared the following month.

After Taryn was reported missing on Monday, police began a regional search to find her. They used drones and dogs, and checked with friends to see if the girl may be staying with them. At the time, police announced that she may also have been a runaway.

But investigators made a grisly discovery on Thursday. During a late night press conference, Gem County sheriff Donnie Wunder announced that investigators found a dead body on a property in the same rural neighborhood where Taryn was last seen.

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Tristan Sexton, Taylor Summers, Taryn Summers
Credit: Gem County Sheriff's Office

Police did not clarify how the body was found. A coroner was called to remove "sensitive material" at the scene, CBS2 reports.

"I can confirm that a body has been discovered and that body is pending identification, but it is believed to be that of 8-year-old Taryn Summers, AKA Taryn Quinton," Wunder said, according to the Idaho State Journal.

According to the East Idaho News, Wunder told reporters the older siblings have been located and are not in danger. While law enforcement officials have made contact with Taylor, Tristan was recently contacted by other family members.

"We do not believe that they were recently with Taryn," Wunder said.

Wunder also announced that someone had been arrested in a nearby county on suspicion of murder, but he did not share the suspect's identify or any identifying details about the suspect.

Anyone with any information about these children's disappearances or Taryn's death is asked to call the Gem County Sheriff's Office at 208-365-3521.