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Vigil held for murdered 10-year-old Texas girl; suspected relative on immigration hold

BULLARD, Texas - People wore pink and carried pink ribbons on Sunday in honor of a murdered 10-year-old. An Amber Alert for the girl was discontinued on Saturday after authorities announced they found the likely remains of Kayla Gomez-Orozco.

Family and friends were at two vigils Sunday. One was held at the 4th grader's school, Jack Elementary in Tyler, another at Brook Hill School in Bullard.

During a Sunday press conference, Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith confirmed they found a body near a home in Bullard Saturday night after law enforcement developed a new lead. The body was found inside a well near a home about two miles from the church where Kayla was last seen last Tuesday night. 

An autopsy will be completed at the Southwest Institute of Forensic Science in Dallas.

Smith confirmed a 24-year-old family member of Kayla's, who lived near the house, voluntarily went in for police questioning. He was later placed in the Smith County Jail on an immigration hold, and no bond has been set. Smith said the family member has yet to be officially charged with murder in Kayla's death but are continuing their investigation and more information would be released at a late time.

Tyler media outlet KLTV first reported evidence was found on the property, which prompted investigators to get a warrant and search the area. An area of about 200 square feet was taped off as investigators worked the scene.

The discovery of the remains followed a day of searching. The FBI organized a massive search on that involved more than 800 volunteers combing 1,500 acres.

The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said Kayla was at church attending a prayer service around 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday at First Assembly of God with her mother. Her family said she got bored and left the room to wait in the lobby and was playing with a baby cousin. When her mother went to check on her about an hour later, she was gone.

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