12-year-old girl strangled to death, dumped in creek in Texas; suspect at large

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Wednesday, June 19, 2024
Woman 'thought it was a mannequin' when girl's body found near creek
Houston police are on the trail for the suspect or suspects who allegedly killed a 12-year-old girl and left her body in a shallow creek.

HOUSTON -- More information is coming out about the death of a 12-year-old girl after her body was discovered in a creek in north Houston on Monday.

Jocelyn Nungaray was found near the North Freeway, walking distance from where she lives, after investigators believe she snuck out of her home around 10 p.m. on Sunday. Her mother last saw her when she went to bed, according to police.

ABC Houston affiliate KTRK spoke to Nungaray's grandmother, who said, "We really want justice for her. We are asking for everyone's help."

She describes her as an incredibly kind and loving girl. The family recently came back from their annual vacation at a state park.

Nungaray was reportedly talking to her 13-year-old boyfriend on the phone around midnight when he heard her talking with two adults.

Tuesday evening, Houston police released pictures of two male persons of interest in the case.

RELATED: HPD believes 12-year-old girl may have snuck out of her home before being found dead in creek

"There will be a report issued shortly with very bad, horrific circumstances," Houston Mayor John Whitmire said on Tuesday.

Investigators have been searching for surveillance video that will help lead them to the killer.

SEE ALSO: Police suspect foul play after mom of 4 found hanged off Texas dock

Billie Jackson was driving home from dropping her husband off from work on Monday morning when she said she made the disturbing discovery.

"I drove past. And, when I looked up the creek, I thought it was a mannequin. I did a U-turn, and I stopped on the bridge, put my flashers on, looked down and realized it was someone. I parked right here and called 911 immediately," she said.

The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences determined Nungaray died by strangulation.

Authorities urge anyone with information about the girl's death to contact Crime Stoppers of Houston at 713-222-TIPS (8477).