FORT MORGAN, Colo. (CBS4) – The body of a Fort Morgan teenager has been sent to a private forensic lab as investigators try to determine how she died.
The body of 17-year-old Kayla Chadwick was found last week near Fort Morgan, 16 months after she disappeared. Investigators confirmed her identity on Thursday. Authorities believe the body was in the spot the whole time.
Searchers had been to the area but the body was hidden in high weeds by an irrigation ditch. It was not buried. The corner said Chadwick’s body was so badly decomposed it may be impossible to determine the cause of death. Clothing was found as well.
“Recently in last few weeks we received some more information from people who came forward and passed on information,” Lt. Jared Crone with Ft. Morgan police said. “Based on that we were able to get some search warrants to include some more specific locations to look.”
One place that has been searched is a home in Fort Morgan that belongs to the Torralba family. Ivan Torralba was Kayla’s boyfriend. She is believed to have had an argument with him the night she disappeared. He and his mother Lucy have been charged with lying to the grand jury investigating the case.
Ivan Torralba has an arrest record that includes drugs, weapons and now also perjury and attempting to influence a public servant by hiding a gun that could be evidence.
This Fourth of July weekend has left Fort Morgan in little mood to celebrate.
“Kind of upsetting, especially since she’s been missing for so long, you don’t really expect to hear something like this in the small town of Fort Morgan,” a Fort Morgan woman said.
“It was shocking when I first heard it. In small town like this it’s kind of big news,” a Fort Morgan man said.
A candlelight vigil for Chadwick is now scheduled for Sunday at 8:30 p.m. at the park on Main Street in Fort Morgan.