A statewide Amber Alert was issued for the girl and federal, local and state authorities have been combing the area. She's about 30 pounds with blue eyes and brown hair. Mariah Woods' family has said that the 3-year-old struggles to get around on her own and wears leg braces for assistance.
- As officials and investigators in Onslow County moved into Day 4 of the search for Mariah Kay Woods, 3, focus was shifted to a creek off U.S. Highway 17, just a few miles from where the child was last seen. Boats and crews on horseback were called in Thursday to aid in the search being conducted by foot, by air and with canines, Onslow County Sheriff Hans Miller said at a Thursday press briefing.
The media outlet is reporting Melissa Hunter, Mariah's grandmother, says Mariah's mother put the girl to bed at their home and she checked on her about 9 or 10 p.m. Hunter says the mother went to check on Mariah Monday morning, but she was gone.
"Every second counts when a child is missing, especially after the cold night we just had", said Hans Miller, Onslow County Sheriff.
"Please, bring her back", Kristy Woods said earlier Tuesday, as reported by CBS affiliate WNCT.
Authorities have not said much about the investigation, but said they do not believe there is an ongoing threat to the general public.
The items will be prioritized for testing as officials try to determine whether they have any evidentiary value in the search for Mariah Woods.
The police have asked anyone who came into contact with Mariah's immediate family on Sunday or Monday to come forward with information so they can make a timeline of her disappearance. On Thursday, officials said more resources - law enforcement horses and searchboats - have been added to the search teams.
But Mariah's biological father, Alex Woods, expressed doubts that his daughter was abducted, according to WCTI. "I don't know if she takes medication of any kind, but I am sure by this point, she needs something". He said he custody of the children for around a month a year ago after an incident that alerted Child Protective Services, but when Hunter got the kids back, she reportedly wasn't cooperative in allowing Woods visitation. "We've been very active, but as the investigation goes on, we continue to search in expanding circles", Miller said. Alex Woods told the New Bern station.