United States

Missing 11-Year-Old Audrii Cunningham Found Dead In Texas River

Drivers found the body of 11-year-old Audrii Cunningham, who was missing since last week, in the Trinity River.

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AP
11-year-old Audrii Cunningham was missing since last week. Photo: AP
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The search for missing 11-year-old Audrii Cunningham ended tragically on Tuesday afternoon when her body was found in the Trinity River, Polk County officials confirmed. The young girl had vanished six days prior, last seen near her Livingston home on Thursday morning.

"My heart aches with this news," said Polk County Sheriff Byron Lyons, expressing his deepest sympathies to Audrii's family and loved ones.

Don McDougal, the last person seen with Audrii, is expected to face capital murder charges in connection with her death. He was initially detained last Friday as a person of interest and will be formally arrested upon warrant issuance.

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District Attorney Shelly Bush-Sitton emphasized the ongoing investigation's sensitivity and acknowledged the difficulty for Audrii's family and the community.

Don%20McDougal%20has%20been%20named%20as%20one%20of%20the%20persons%20of%20interest%20involved%20in%20the%20disappearance%20of%2011-year-old%20Audrii%20Cunningham.
Don McDougal has been named as one of the persons of interest involved in the disappearance of 11-year-old Audrii Cunningham. Photo: AP
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Details of the Case

McDougal, 42, developed a recent friendship with Audrii's family, residing behind their house. He reportedly helped with transportation, occasionally walking Audrii to the bus stop and sometimes taking her to school when she missed it.

However, concerns arose due to McDougal's past criminal history involving another young girl over a decade ago. Despite this, he wasn't registered as a sex offender.

The cause of Audrii's death remains undetermined pending an autopsy report. Sheriff Lyons stated that the investigation is ongoing, with cellphone data, video footage, and information from McDougal playing crucial roles in leading to the discovery.

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