THATCHER – The body of a 3-year-old girl was found buried in a backyard and police say the child may have been missing for two years.
Thatcher Police investigators say they started searching after two children were found alone in a hotel near Safford. One of the children told a worker with the Arizona Department of Child Safety about a sister, who went missing in 2012.
That led investigators to a home's backyard on 1st Street where a girl's body was discovered and exhumed. The girl was found inside a plastic container that had been sealed.
Barbara White lives at the home now and says they found the body between the two homes and buried six feet under.
The Pima County Medical Examiner's office was working Friday to identify the body.
The mother and boyfriend of the children found alone in the hotel are now being called persons of interest in the case. Anna Marie Sanchez, 23, and Joshua Cisneros, 28, are currently in jail on unrelated charges.
Authorities say the case is being handled as a potential homicide and is still under investigation. A spokesperson with the Thatcher Police Department said he could not recall when they last had a homicide in the town but it had been a long time.