The discovery of a 12-year-old girl's body in a home's recycling bin spread grief and fear Tuesday through a small town in southern New Jersey that had been desperately searching for her since she missed her curfew over the weekend.
Gloucester County Prosecutor Sean Dalton said the body of Autumn Pasquale was found around 10 p.m. Monday in the bin just blocks from her house and from Borough Hall, where thousands of people gathered earlier in the evening for a tearful candlelight vigil to pray for her safe return.
"The search for Autumn is over," he told a news conference Tuesday. Dalton said if someone is responsible for her death, they'll be held accountable.
With autopsy results pending, he did not label the death a homicide. He said the investigation was just beginning and that there were no suspects.