Many social media speculated that the body found on Tuesday was 13-year-old Mannie from Lancaster, CA, drawing comparisons to between the police sketch and photos of the teen. But authorities say the cases are not related. Mannie's mother, Nefertiti Neal, confirmed tearfully to ABC7 it is not her daughter, saying, "There's nothing worse than to not know where your baby is, and to have a homicide detective call you and ask you what color is her shirt and where are her scars."
LASD confirms the victim found in Hacienda Heights is NOT Skylar Mannie who was reported missing in Lancaster. Homicide Investigators are working diligently to solve the case of the girl found in Hacienda Heights & we ask our residents to keep an eye out for Skylar!#LASD #AV411 pic.twitter.com/oRZPo08bvT— LASD Lancaster Stn. (@LANLASD) March 7, 2019
Neal said that her daughter was involved in an unlawful relationship with an adult man and when she got the police involved, Mannie ran away. "I think that she met someone else, and that someone else is taking advantage of her being 13," Neal said. Mannie has reportedly been in contact with people through social media, and Neal was sent a video showing an older man touching her daughter. Mannie was also spotted on a Metro train bound for Los Angeles.
Police have yet to identity the child found in Hacienda Heights. Hundreds of people gathered Thursday evening for a candlelit vigil for the young girl, according to KTLA.
There were no visible signs of trauma on her body. A cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner. Authorities said the case is being investigated as a suspicious death. "It’s a horrible tragic case our investigators are working diligently on to solve,” Homicide Lt. Scott Hoglund said in a press conference on Wednesday. "We are looking for any lead."
Skylar Mannie is Black, 5'5", and 130 pounds. Anyone with information on her whereabouts should call 911, 1-800-5678, or the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office at 1-661-948-8466.
The unidentified child is described as a Black girl between the ages of 8 and 13, 4'5" tall, and weighed just 55 pounds when she was found. She was wearing a pink long sleeved shirt that had "future princess hero" written on the front and gray panda print pants. Anyone with even the smallest bit of information should call Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500. Anonymous tips can be submitted through Crime Stoppers by calling 800-222-TIPS (8477) or by downloading the P3 Tips mobile app.