Girl Who Vanished on 5-Minute Walk Home Found Dead

Iliana 'Lily' Peters was 10
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 26, 2022 12:00 AM CDT
Girl, 10, Found Dead After Vanishing While Walking Home
Relatives of Iliana "Lily" Peters comfort each other as they pray together at a vigil for the 10 year-old girl at Valley Vineyard Church in Chippewa Falls, Wis., Monday evening, April 25, 2022.   (Jeff Wheeler/Star Tribune via AP)

(Newser) – Ten-year-old Iliana "Lily" Peters was reported missing around 9pm Sunday when she didn't return home after a visit to her aunt's house, just four blocks—a five-minute walk, per her dad—away. Little more than 12 hours later, the case came to the worst possible end when the Wisconsin 4th-grader's body was found in the woods, near the Duncan Creek walking trail. Police are investigating her death as a homicide, the Chippewa Herald reports, and no suspect has yet been publicly identified.

The Chippewa Falls girl's bicycle was found Sunday night, in the woods not far from her aunt’s home, near a walking trail between the end of her aunt's street and the Leinenkugel’s brewery parking lot. Her body was then found in the woods at 9:15am Monday, in roughly the same area as the bike, per the Star-Tribune.

Because no one is yet in custody, police warn local residents there may be a danger to the public, and everyone is being asked to stay vigilant, WEAU reports. Parents, for example, are recommended to drop off and pick up their children from area schools. Authorities have also set up a tip line for anyone with information on the case: 1-800-263-5906. Police are not saying what led them to determine Lily's death was a homicide, but say that the determination was made quickly after her body was found. (Read more Wisconsin stories.)

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