The search for a missing 4-year-old girl ended tragically on Friday as Evelyn Geer was found dead in Port Charlotte, Florida. WINK News reported that she was reported missing at 1 a.m. and discovered six hours later near the canal behind the Vrbo rental where her family was staying.
The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office confirmed the heartbreaking news in a Facebook statement, expressing their condolences and requesting prayers for the grieving family.
The search involved aviation units, a bloodhound, and a boat from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. An autopsy date has yet to be determined, according to Claudette Smith, a public information officer with the sheriff’s office. Evelyn, who had autism, wandered away from the rental property wearing only a diaper, leading towards the canal, ABC 7.
The family had been residing there after being displaced by Hurricane Ian in September. The absence of a deadbolt lock on the rental’s front door, which the family used at home due to Evelyn’s condition, was noted by the sheriff’s office, according to WINK News.
The discovery of Evelyn’s body was made behind the homes on Barksdale Street in Port Charlotte, causing distress among the neighborhood residents who had noticed the search efforts earlier in the morning.