Body of missing 4-year-old girl with autism found in pond

PORT ST. LUCIE, Florida -- The body of a missing 4-year-old girl has been found by authorities in Florida.

Chelsea Noel, who had autism, was last seen just before 10 p.m. Saturday night in Port St. Lucie, Florida, police said.

She had walked out of her home in the 4600-block of southwest Keats Street, near southwest Becker Road, wearing a pink nightgown with a cartoon horse on it. Police said she was attracted to lights, so they checked holiday displays at nearby homes.

The FBI, Florida Department of Law Enforcement and local deputies joined the search. Bloodhounds and a helicopter were also employed.

A local resident donated the use of his drone to help in searching areas for the child, police said. That drone detected a discolored figure in a body of water, near southwest Hallmark Street and southwest Abacus Avenue, a few blocks from her home.

A dive team searched that retention pond for Noel Sunday morning, but there was no sign of the toddler.

A US marshal and a member of the search team looked for the girl in a kayak on the same pond around late Sunday. Around 11 p.m., they saw a small body submerged in the water.

They removed the body from the water, which was confirmed to be Chelsea Noel. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
Copyright © 2021 ABC News Internet Ventures.