Police say the body of 10-year-old Hailey Owens has been found in southwest Missouri, a few miles east of where the missing girl was reportedly kidnapped by a man in a pickup truck Tuesday evening. Search crews found a body they believe is Hailey inside the suspect’s Springfield home.
Police arrested a suspect in the kidnapping Tuesday night. At a press conference Wednesday morning, that suspect was identified as Craig Michael Wood. According to the Greene County Sheriff’s Department website, Wood was booked into jail on a charge of murder.
The superintendent of Springfield Public Schools also confirms that Wood worked for the district for over 15 years. The Springfield School District says Wood is a coach and teacher’s aide at a school for students in kindergarten through eighth grade. Hailey did not attend that school, and Williams says the two apparently didn’t know each other. His employment has been suspended.
An AMBER alert was issued Tuesday evening after Hailey disappeared. Witnesses told police a man in a Ford pickup truck drove along a street several times before stopping to approach Owens. That is when the man allegedly pulled Hailey into his truck and drove off.
Wood was arrested late Tuesday in a vehicle parked outside his house. Formal charges have not been filed.
Stay with ABC 17 News and abc17news.com for updates on this developing story.