BULLARD, Texas (KXAN) — A 10-year-old from east Texas was found dead after an Amber Alert was issued when she disappeared last Tuesday and a family member is in custody in connection with her death.
Kayla Gomez was the focus of a nationwide search after she went missing. Police said a tip led them to her body on Sunday just outside of Bullard, near Tyler in northeast Texas. She was found close to the First Assembly of God church where she was last seen alive.
Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said Kayla’s body was found in a well near a family member’s home, about three miles from where she was last seen. That family member, identified as an uncle by Tyler NBC affiliate KETK as Gustavo Zavala, is being held on an immigration detainer and was previously deported for a violent crime, according to a KETK source.
Now the district attorneys from Smith and Cherokee counties will work together to determine what formal charges will be brought in the case.
Smith says Kayla was found wearing the clothes she was in when she disappeared Tuesday.
Flowers and ribbons with Kayla’s name filled the sanctuary of Bullard First Assembly Church Sunday
“It’s one of those things where I want to put on a front, that everybody needs to be strong, but just like many other people in the community, we’re hurting,” said Pastor Wayne Tunnell.