Enough Remains Found for Nearly Complete Skeleton of a Child: Hallandale Beach Police

Police disclosed more details about what was buried in the backyard of the home where missing boy Dontrell Melvin once lived

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Hallandale Beach Police Chief Dwayne Flournoy disclosed more details Tuesday about what was buried in the backyard of the home where Dontrell Melvin once lived. He said they recovered enough remains to put together a virtually complete skeleton of a child.

    Hallandale Beach Police said Tuesday that they found enough remains in the backyard of the home where Dontrell Melvin once lived to piece together a virtually complete skeleton of a child.

    Police are still awaiting DNA confirmation of the remains.

    Dontrell was 5 months old when he was last seen around July 2011, according to police.

    DCF Documents Reveal Problems in Home of Missing Boy

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    A DCF report released Monday showed that when a Hallandale Beach Police officer called the Florida Abuse Hotline in October 2012, it wasn't known where Dontrell Melvin was or if he was alive. A person who called in a complaint Jan. 8 made allegations of child neglect in his family's home.

    “At the time we found the initial remains they were wrapped in a particular item. I really don't want to give what it was wrapped in, but it was wrapped in a particular item,” Police Chief Dwayne Flournoy said. “We had a good deal of remains that we believe that we can put together virtually a complete skeleton of that of a child.”

    Parents Brittney Sierra and Calvin Melvin Jr. are being held on child neglect charges, and Flournoy has called them suspects in the possible death of their son.

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    Judge Kenneth Gillespie said Monday that there was probable cause for authorities' removal of Renee Menendez and Keno Hodges' four young children. The judge and a child protective investigator spoke about the case in court. Menendez and Hodges' attorney said they would not make any comment.

    VIDEO: Dontrell Melvin's Mother Sent Desperate Text: Godfather

    Sierra is being held on $100,000 bond. Melvin, who is also charged with obstructing a criminal investigation by providing false statements to police, is being held on $150,000 bond, online jail records said.

    The police chief also responded Tuesday to what the Department of Children and Families revealed the day before – that a Hallandale Beach Police officer called the Florida Abuse Hotline in October 2012 to report that the mother had not seen her baby boy since July 2011.

    “She still talks on and off with the father but every time she asks about the baby he is just always making excuses and never brings the baby by,” the officer said in the phone call. “So she doesn’t even know, I mean, whether the baby is even alive or not.”

    A DCF intake report showed the call was screened out – meaning no investigator was sent out.

    DCF Secretary David Wilkins said in a statement Monday that his agency did not have the authority to investigate a missing child report.

    But Flournoy said that police expected DCF to investigate.

    “It was a child custody issue,” he said. “Wasn't a missing person case because DCF, who helped us with the missing person case on Jan. 9 – that was a missing person case, they helped us with that case. So …” Flournoy trailed off, raising his eyebrows.

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