By Christine Vendel and Mike Hendricks
KANSAS CITY, Mo. —
A body believed to be that of the 18-month-old daughter of murder victim Kaylie Bailey was found Saturday in Osage County, Kan., authorities said early Sunday.
Lana-Leigh Bailey had been presumed dead, but searchers had been unable to locate her body, despite six days of intensive searching.
That search came to an end late Saturday, the Franklin County, Kan., sheriff’s department said, when a deputy from neighboring Osage County found human remains.
A positive identification could not be made, but Franklin County Sheriff Jeff Richards said it was likely that of the toddler and expressed sympathies for the family of the child.
“It is with great sadness that I report a body found in Osage County is believed to be the remains of 18-month-old Lana Bailey,” Richards said. “I want the family of Lana, and all of the victims, to know that this investigation will continue until we are confident we have collected as much evidence as we can to ensure justice is served on behalf of all four victims.
“Confident and capable investigators from multiple volunteer, local, state and federal agencies worked almost non-stop to find Lana since this horrific crime was reported. It is not the outcome we’d hoped for but knew we couldn’t stop searching until Lana was home.”
Her 21-year-old mother was found murdered along with Andrew Stout, 30, and Steven E. White, 31, at a farm west of Ottawa. Bailey’s car was later recovered in Emporia, Kan.
Kyle Trevor Flack, 27, faces charges in the case that could carry a possible death penalty.
More than 120 investigators - at times up to 150 - used dive teams, police dogs, mounted patrols, planes, boats and all-terrain vehicles to scour fields, farms, ponds and creeks between Ottawa and Emporia looking for the girl, said Richards.
“We’ve covered a large area in a short amount of time,” he said earlier Saturday when the department was ready to scale back its search.
Saturday was the last day for the Major Case Squad, he said.