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8/13/2010 4:02:00 AM
Update: Human remains believed to be Sylar Newton

Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter


BEAVER CREEK -- Skeletal remains were discovered Tuesday afternoon less than two miles from the campground where missing 2-year-old Sylar Newton was last seen on July 25.

An autopsy was scheduled Wednesday, but the Yavapai Sheriff's Office does not expect results for weeks.

The remains were located at the bottom of a wash and, likely, were carried downstream and came to rest in this area due to recent flash flooding.

At this time, the remains are believed to be that of Sylar Newton, but final confirmation is still pending, according to the Sheriff's Office. YCSO received the call regarding the discovery just before 1 p.m. Tuesday.

The body was reported discovered by Don Newton, one of many searchers who told reporters he recently discovered he is distantly related to the family.

YCSO detectives, assisted by FBI agents and a forensic anthropologist, conducted an on-scene criminal investigation as they recovered the body.

The search for the missing Flagstaff boy was scaled-back after nine days of round-the-clock searching that included deepwater pools in the adjacent Beaver Creek. At that point, the Yavapai Sheriff's Office predicted the child was dead and the case would continue as a criminal investigation.

The child disappeared overnight while his custodial family slept in two tents at the Beaver Creek campground. Sylar, his custodial mother Christina Priem, her mother Nancy and Priems daughter were in one tent. Priem's son and his friend were in an adjacent tent.

The Sheriff's Office says more details will be released when available.

Separately, details are emerging about the Sylar's history and relationship to is adoptive family.

Sylar's biological mother Charity Newton reportedly has given birth to three other children, in addition to Sylar.

All have been given up for adoption, according to the little boy's great-grandmother.

There also appears to be another player in the Priem family, Sandra Shoemake who has been involved in the Sylar's custody. Sandra and the Charity Newton physically fought in 2008 over custody of a child believed to be Sylar. At the time Charity Newton was charged with five counts of disorderly conduct and fighting.

Newton, Priem and, especially Shoemake have had numerous police contacts that show up in the public record.

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