MOBILE, Ala. – A second body was recovered Sunday in the search for four children allegedly thrown from a coastal bridge by their father, the sheriff said.
The body was found by a search team near where a duck hunter found the body of an infant about five miles west of the bridge in a marshy area on Saturday, said Mobile County sheriff's Sgt. Jerry Taylor.
The search for the children -- ranging in age from a few months to 3 years -- began Tuesday near the mouth of Mobile Bay after prosecutors said the father, Lam Luong, confessed.
The children's mother, 23-year-old Kieu Phan, had gone with Luong to report them missing Monday evening.
"The inevitable nightmare we have feared has now been confirmed," Mobile County Sheriff Sam Cochran said Saturday. "We believe, certainly now, that the father of these children threw these children off the Dauphin Island bridge."
Cochran said searchers using sonar technology saw images Friday that they believed were three bodies, but the currents were so strong the divers were unable to get to the location.
Divers re-entered the water Saturday and worked until darkness forced them out of the water without finding the other three bodies. Authorities expanded the search zone westward toward Pascagoula, Miss., believing that the strong currents may have moved the bodies in that direction. The search resumed Sunday morning.
Luong, 37, a shrimp boat worker who lives in Irvington, was being held without bond on four counts of capital murder. If convicted, he could be sentenced to death or life in prison without parole.
District Attorney John Tyson Jr. said Luong had confessed to throwing Ryan Phan, 3, Hannah Luong, 2, Lindsey Luong, 1, and Danny Luong, 4 months, off the three-mile-long bridge after an argument with his wife.
Luong later recanted, claiming two Asian women took the children and never returned them. But a witness saw Luong on the 80-foot-tall two-lane bridge with the children, and another saw him leave the area without the children, Cochran said Friday.
Luong's appointed attorney, Joe Kulakowski, met with Luong on Saturday and did not immediately return a phone message for comment.