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Former Austin police chief says Maleah Davis case similar to that of Colton Turner

In an exclusive sit-down interview about the case, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said all evidence he’s seen points to a grim discovery.

AUSTIN, Texas — Former Austin police chief and current Houston police chief Art Acevedo sat down with KHOU for an exclusive interview about the disappearance of Maleah Davis. 

The four-year-old has been missing since April 30.

Chief Acevedo said this case reminds him of Colton Turner, the two-year-old that went missing and was found buried in a shallow grave in Southeast Austin in 2014. 

Chief Acevedo was present when officers found Colton's body. 

"It was just a little lifeless body," Chief Acevedo said. "I mean, you take that with you. You don't forget that."


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“I’ll never forget when we uncovered that little boy,” Chief Acevedo said. “[He was] wrapped up in a rug underneath about five or six inches, maybe a foot, of dirt. FBI [agents], Austin PD cops [were] crying. That’s what I’m thinking about when I think about her somewhere out there.” 

"We all had tears in our eyes." Chief Acevedo said.

Colton's mother Meagan Work and her boyfriend Michael Turner admitted to burying Colton after he died from a seizure. Work pleaded guilty in 2018 to a charge of tampering with evidence and a charge of injury to a child by omission, meaning she failed to find medical care for her son. 

"[Colton] was a beautiful little boy." Chief Acevedo said. 


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Maleh's stepfather, Derion Vence, was charged with tampering by Harris County prosecutors

When asked if Vence could help find Maleah, Chief Acevedo said, “Oh, I’m sure he could. I’m sure if he really wanted to, he could tell us exactly where to find that body. That’s just an opinion based on what I know so far.”

“We already know and believe that she is dead, and we need to bring her home,” Chief Acevedo said.

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of $5,000 for information. All tips are taken anonymously and can be reported by calling (713) 222-TIPS (8477). 

WATCH: Blame game heats up in Maleah Davis case