Gannon Stauch human remains of missing 11 year old Colorado boy found in Florida as child’s stepmother, Letecia Stauch faces potential death penalty.
The discovery follows the boy going missing from the Colorado Springs area on January 27.
Stauch’s stepmother, Letecia Stauch, 36, earlier this month was booked into the El Pasp County jail on counts of first-degree murder, child abuse resulting in death, tampering with a deceased human body and tampering with evidence.
The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office said they were contacted by the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office in Florida on Wednesday about the remains of a boy recovered in Pace, north of Pensacola.
The District One Medical Examiner performed an autopsy, which led to today’s announcement.
‘We would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Gannon,’ a press release from the sheriff’s office stated.
Human remains found in Florida tentatively identified as Gannon Stauch: https://t.co/VtRK8gM3CJ. There is a gag order in effect for this case so we cannot go into any details. #GannonStauch pic.twitter.com/2dcD1mdV6k
— EPCSheriff (@EPCSheriff) March 20, 2020
Just now getting photos from the area where they found #GannonStauch in Pace, FL.
(courtesy: Hudson Miller WEAR TV) pic.twitter.com/Eod7PTMI25
— Julia Donovan KRDO (@julia_donovanTV) March 20, 2020
Why did Gannon Stauch stepmom kill him?
Letecia Stauch was arrested in South Carolina on March 2 and was later extradited back to Colorado to face charges of murder of a child under 12 years of age by a person in a position of trust, child abuse resulting in death and tampering with a dead body.
The boy’s stepmom originally told authorities that she last saw her stepson between 3.15pm and 4pm on January 27. She said at the time that he was heading to a friend’s house in Colorado Springs.
Gannon was originally categorized as a runaway, before his case was upgraded to that of a missing/endangered person.
But on the day of Letecia’s arrest in South Carolina, police announced they no longer believed the child to be alive.
Police have not yet laid out their theory on what happened to him or where they believe he is.
At a press conference following Letecia’s arrest, El Paso Sheriff’s Lt. Mitch Mahalko said authorities no longer believed Gannon was alive. Mahalko said they are not releasing information as to why they believe that, or why they have accused Letecia of first-degree murder. According to KOAA, the arrest warrant for Letecia was first sought by El Paso County authorities on Friday, Feb. 28.
How did Gannon’s body end up in Florida?
Surveillance video from a neighbor’s home captured Stauch leaving the home with Gannon in her pickup truck at around 10.13am on January 27.
However, when she returned at 2.19pm, Gannon is nowhere to be seen.
Footage from 2.19pm to the time Gannon was reportedly last seen is not available, but the sheriff’s office said earlier that officers had no surveillance video showing the boy leaving the property.
After he watched the video, a friend said the boy’s father ‘just broke down and started saying ‘she lied, she lied about the time.’
In an interview prior to her arrest, Letecia insisted she had nothing to do with the boy’s disappearance or death.
After news of the video broke, Stauch gave an interview to KKTV, insisting that she played no part in her stepson’s disappearance.
‘I took care of Gannon for the last two years in our home because his mother didn’t want to do it,’ she said.
‘I would never ever, ever hurt this child… these people have these conspiracy theories… I’m like: “Why are you saying Gannon is dead?” He is not dead. We are going to find Gannon.’
It continued to remain how Gannon’s body ended up some 1500 miles away from where he was last seen.
During Letecia’s initial court appearance in El Paso County on March 11, prosecutors said they have not ruled out the possibility of pursuing the death penalty against her.
The stepmother is due back in court for a status conference on April 14.
The El Paso Sheriff’s Office is now asking anybody who was in the Pace or Pensacola areas between Feb. 3 and 5 to call them at 719-520-6666 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.