Police say that it is likely that drug dealers killed a 14-year-0ld Texas girl with a hammer in a drug deal gone bad. The girl vanished over the summer and turned up dead in a landfill.
On Friday, Bedford police detained a 16-year-old male in connection with the death of Kaytlynn Cargill. Police booked him into the Tarrant County Juvenile Detention Facility in Fort Worth where prosecutors charged him with her murder. A judge set his bond at $25o,000.
Cargill disappeared on June 19 while walking her dog around 6:20 p.m. (CDT). Her parents searched roughly 30 minutes for her before contacting police at 8:15 p.m. to report their daughter as missing. Two days later, authorities discovered her body in an Arlington garbage dump. Police believed the suspect, dubbed an “acquaintance,” murdered Cargill during a marijuana deal that soured.
In the arrest warrant obtained by NBC DFW, a source told detectives that Cargill received a text message from the purported assailant on the day she went missing. It requested she come alone to meet with him and his brother in regards to “purchasing and selling marijuana.”
The source told investigators that Cargill was going to make “dabs,” slang for a concentrated butane-injected version of weed consumed in a vaporized state, according to the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse. The court document indicated the teen planned to sell the dabs back to the suspect for $300.
In early August, DNA testing confirmed Cargill’s blood was found on the head of a hammer, hallway walls, a closet, a bedroom, the blinds in a kitchen area, and the adjacent patio sliding glass door and patio ledge of the suspect’s nearby apartment where he “had been staying for approximately two weeks” prior to Cargill’s death, according to the arrest warrant. During their forensic investigation, Bedford authorities saw a dumpster “within close proximity” of that patio. Police believe the suspect placed the girl’s lifeless body into that dumpster. A sanitation truck unknowingly transported the body to the Arlington landfill where officials discovered her remains.
Following the grim discovery, around 100 of Cargill’s friends held a vigil. Many described her as a vibrant young teen that loved band.
On August 10, the Tarrant County examiner ruled Cargill’s death “homicidal violence.” Bedford police reassured the community there was no “threat” to the public although they did not release any details about the open case “to maintain the integrity of the investigation.”
When officers arrested the 16-year old suspect on Friday, the teen was at a Fort Worth high school where the district told NBC DFW the boy recently enrolled. Bedford police released a statement, indicating they met with Cargill’s family to inform them about the male juvenile’s detention.
Many questions arose after Cargill’s death over why local law enforcement did not issue an Amber Alert at the time of her disappearance. In Texas, authorities must show a “credible threat” to the safety of a child 17 years or younger when a minor’s whereabouts are unknown. Bedford police defended their decision by saying no evidence pointed towards a kidnapping or an abduction, although KDFW reported authorities immediately entered the girl’s information into a local and national database for missing children.
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