Missing mom, daughter found dead in rural Washington

Published: Mar. 22, 2023 at 4:27 PM PDT
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VANCOUVER Wash. (KPTV) – The Vancouver Police Department says the bodies of a missing mom and daughter have been found in a rural area near Washougal on Wednesday.

The mother, 27-year-old Meshay Melendez, and her 7-year-old daughter, Layla Stewart, were last seen on the morning of March 12. A car that police believe belonged to Melendez was found a short distance from the 7700 block of Vancouver Mall Drive on March 19.

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On March 19, police arrested Kirkland Warren, a person of interest in their disappearance, on charges of tampering with a witness, violation of domestic violence orders and possession of a firearm. Police believe Warren was the last person Melendez and Stewart were with before they disappeared.

On Wednesday, around 9:40 a.m., the Clark County Sheriff’s Office responded to a suspicious circumstance call off SE Sunset View Road in Washougal. The caller reported there appeared to be two “life-sized mannequins” just off the road, down an embankment. Deputies then responded to the scene.

Family members of Meshay and Layla have been notified and cause of death and manner are pending a report from the Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office.