Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Autopsy Reveals Utah Girl Found Dead in Canal Was Sexually Assaulted

Sierra Lynn Newbold. Family photo.

There are no leads as of yet in the death of 6-year-old Sierra Lynn Newbold, whose body was discovered Tuesday morning in a West Jordan, Utah, canal.  She was found a half hour after being reported missing. West Jordan Police Chief Doug Dia­mond said that when Sierra’s mother called to report her missing, her husband had already left for work, and the family’s two other children were still home.

Sierra’s death has been ruled a homicide, and an autopsy revealed evidence that she was sexually assaulted.  In order to protect the investigation, police are not releasing many facts of the case, including how long Sierra was dead before she was found.  Also not released are the images recorded by a surveillance camera outside the Newbold house.  The Newbold family has been cooperating throughout the investigation, police say.

During a press conference, Diamond said that there is no reason to panic but that ”there’s obviously a predator out there. Unfortunately, we have people out there who are monsters.” He advised families to lock their doors and watch children who are outside.

Makeshift memorials have been erected in Sierra’s neighborhood and at the school she was due to start attending in September.

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