The search for an 8-year-old girl, missing since at least 2019, has ended after her body was found earlier this week.
Mildred Alexis Old Crow was reported missing in November 2020, when non-custodial relatives notified the Bureau of Indian Affairs at Crow Agency that they hadn’t seen the girl since July 2018, according to the National Center for Missing and Endangered, Inc.
Through their investigation, federal authorities discovered that Mildred was seen by others in March 2019, while she was in the care of her Crow Tribal Court-appointed guardian, on the Crow Indian Reservation in Montana.
Authorities issued a statewide Missing Endangered Person Advisory (MEPA) for the girl. However, no updates would come from officials until yesterday, when Tribal Chairman Frank White Clay confirmed that a body found on the reservation the day before belonged to the vanished girl.
“Our hearts ache for the family and I lift them up in prayer. The entire community felt the loss when Mildred went missing and we feel it again today. My hope is that we can find closure, grieve together, and work to ensure that children are protected and supported on the Crow reservation and beyond. We want justice for this child and for all of the victims of the epidemic of people missing from reservations across the country,” White Clay said in a statement, according to NCME.
Investigators have not revealed how the girl died. Her body was found by a camper near Garryowen.
In December, two women were arrested in Billings in connection with Mildred’s disappearance.
According to the Billings Gazette, Veronica Tierza Dust, 34, and Roseen Lincoln Old Crow, 34, were charged in January, in Crow Tribal Court, with endangering the welfare of a child.
One month later, they were both charged with an additional count of custodial interference.
While the exact relationship between Mildred and the two women remains unclear, both women were granted informal custodianship over the girl in March 2017, the paper reports.
Attorney information for the women was not available Friday. They are each being held on $5,000 cash bonds. It is unclear how they have pled to the charges.