Police: Human remains found during search for teen's body - KPTV - FOX 12

Police: Human remains found during search for teen's body

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Yashanee Vaughn's body has not been found. Yashanee Vaughn's body has not been found.
Parrish Bennette is being held in connection with Vaughn's death. Parrish Bennette is being held in connection with Vaughn's death.

Portland police say they found human remains during a search for the body of 14-year-old Yashanee Vaughn, but no official identification has been made.

Multnomah County prosecutors say officers acted on information provided this week by 16-year-old Parish Bennette, who is suspected of killing Vaughn, his one-time girlfriend.

The district attorney's office says no promises or agreements "of any kind were made in connection with the provision of this information."

During a Friday afternoon news conference, police said it could take more than a day to process the scene, now protected under a canopy tent.

The search, which began Friday morning, focused on an area along Northeast Rocky Butte Road -- an area near Benette's home.

The section of woody terrain is located east of where the road loops toward the crest of Rocky Butte Park. Past searches for Vaughn have also focused on the park.

"We're here to bring Yashanee home to her family so they have closure," said police Lt. Robert King. "We all know this is a terrible tragedy. A young woman has lost her life and our hearts break for Yashanee's family."

Several family members drove up to Rocky Butte on Thursday night, but were overcome with emotion and returned home, according to family spokeswoman Michelle Bart.

During the news conference, Bart said the family knows what the outcome will be and that Vaughn will be laid to rest appropriately.

"This is a difficult time. But after Yashanee is found, the fight is not over. Justice has to prevail. And we want everyone to know that Yashanee's situation should be an example of why crime is not justice," Bart said.

Portland Mayor Sam Adams also spoke during the news conference and said if the remains are identified as Vaughn, it will bring a small but important measure of closure to the family.

On Friday evening, a vigil was held for the teen at the park.

No K-9s were being used in the search, which involved Portland police detectives, the Multnomah County District Attorney's Office and Oregon State Police. About 20 people made up the team of investigators at the park Friday, as they marked evidence sites and sifted through the soil.

Investigators say Bennette killed 14-year-old Vaughn on March 19.

Timeline: The Yashanee Vaughn case

Nine days after she disappeared, officers say, they searched Bennette's home and found blood in a bedroom and a shell casing from a .38 caliber revolver.

Prosecutors also presented pictures of Benette posing with a gun connected to the crime and testimony that he had told his father what he had done.

Read full court documents: Police say Bennette admitted gun 'went off'

Bennette has pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and manslaughter.

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