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Officials believe they've found the body of 3-year-old Mariah Woods

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Updated December 04, 2017 10:42 AM EST

The man suspected of a role in the death of a 3-year-old girl in Pender County, North Carolina made his first public appearance in court Monday.

Earl Kimrey, 32, was taken into custody last Saturday and has since been charged with concealing of death in relation to Mariah Kay Woods' passing.

The North Carolina man was also charged with obstruction of justice, second degree burglary, felony larceny and possession of stolen property.

Woods' body was found last Saturday around 5:30 p.m. local time by a member of the Fayetteville, North Carolina Remote Dive Team in Shelter Creek along Shaw Highway in Burgaw, North Carolina.

Updated December 04, 2017 10:32 AM EST

Updated December 02, 2017 08:26 PM EST

Officials believe the body of 3-year-old Mariah Kay Woods has been found in Pender County, according to the FBI.

The FBI said in a press release Saturday at 6:03 p.m. that it would hold a press conference at the intersection of Hwy. 53 and Shaw Highway in Pender County at 6:45 p.m, our affiliate WCTI reported. That was one location law enforcement, the FBI and dive teams had been searching Saturday.

At the press conference, the terrible news was finally made public, ending a six-day ordeal that leaves many in Onslow County, Eastern North Carolina and the country stunned and saddened.

Officials said Woods’ body was found in the water around 5:30 p.m. in Shelter Creek along Shaw Highway in a remote area where the new search was being conducted. Woods’ body was found by a member of the Fayetteville Remote Dive Team. An autopsy by the medical examiner's office will be conducted to verify for sure it's the body of Woods.

Further information was not provided as the FBI and Onslow County Sheriff's Office continue their investigation.

ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WCTI) - One of the worst fears of those searching for and concerned for a missing 3-year-old girl have unfortunately come true.

The Onslow County Sheriff's Office and the FBI announced an arrest has been made in connection with the disappearance of 3-year-old Mariah Woods. Earl Kimrey, 32, was taken into custody by investigators at the Onslow County Sheriff's Office on Friday. Kimrey is the live-in boyfriend of Mariah Woods' mother, Kristy Woods.

Kimrey was taken before a state magistrate and charged with:

-- Concealing of Death

-- Obstruction of Justice

-- Second Degree Burglary

-- Felony Larceny

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-- Possession of Stolen Property

According to a press release from the FBI, Kimrey is currently being held in the Onslow County Detention Center under a $1,010,000 bond. District Attorney Ernie Lee has been consulted on the current charges and additional charges could be pending as the investigation continues.


Due to evidence gathered during the course of the investigation, it is believed that Mariah Wood is deceased. At this time, the location of Mariah Wood is unknown. The searches will now shift to a recovery process, according to the press release.

Kimrey has a criminal history that dates back to 2005, a larceny conviction in Alamance County. He was given probation and a suspended jail sentence. He was convicted in Onslow County in 2012 of assault or threatening of a government official and being drunk and disorderly. He was given probation and a suspended sentence. In 2015, he was convicted of larceny, this time in Brunswick County. He was given probation and a suspended sentence.

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