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Missing 11-year-old girl found dead off Mississippi County road

By Gavin Lesnick

This article was published August 28, 2013 at 10:36 a.m.

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An 11-year-old girl who was reported missing Tuesday night in Mississippi County was found dead in a ditch several miles from her home Wednesday morning, authorities said.

Mississippi County sheriff's office Capt. Robb Rounsavall said the body of Jessica Williams was found about 6:30 a.m. in a ditch off East County Road 122 at Big Lake National Refuge.

Rounsavall estimated it was about 7 miles from the girl's home on North County Road 503, where she was last seen about 6 p.m. Tuesday. She was reported missing about 9 p.m., and searches continued through the night.

Rounsavall said the body was sent to the state Crime Laboratory for an autopsy and that Arkansas State Police were preparing to join the investigation.

He said he couldn't comment on a preliminary cause of death or confirm that foul play is suspected.

"That's what we're trying to determine now," he said by phone.

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