Missing Missouri Girl, 16, Remains Found In Backyard Burn Pile: Mother Charged

A missing 16-year-old Missouri girl’s remains were found in a burn pile on her mother’s property. Savannah Leckie was reported missing in July and the burned bones discovered last week were tested and found to be the remains of the girl who seemingly slipped through the cracks of the system.

It was Savannah Leckie’s biological mother who was charged in the death of her daughter, but Leckie had just come to live with her mother less than a year ago. As a baby, she was put up for adoption and Tamile Leckie-Montague, who was Savannah’s adoptive mother, recently made arrangements for the girl to go live with her biological mother, Rebbecca Ruud.

Savannah was raised by Leckie-Montague in Minnesota, but she stayed in touch with Ruud. Last November, her adoptive mother called Ruud and asked her to take Savannah because she wasn’t getting along with Leckie-Montague’s new boyfriend.

The biological mother was given power of attorney of the girl and her move to Missouri to live with Ruud brought all kinds of horrific changes for the 16-year-old. The disturbing brutal treatment she endured at the hands of her biological mother was heart-wrenching.

She was home schooled in the rural home that sits on 81 acres about five miles from the nearest paved road, according to Fox News.

Investigators found that since the move, the teen had been isolated from people and she had no social contacts. When investigators talked with Rudd’s ex-boyfriend, he said Savannah was made to crawl through a pen with the hogs and bathe in a pond by Ruud.

Ruud’s ex-boyfriend, whose name is said to be Buddy Smart, also said the mother rubbed salt and alcohol on an open wound Savannah had, which was a self-inflicted wound. He said Ruud did this as a form of punishment for the girl. Savannah was subjected to abuse repeatedly by her biological mother.

The pieces of burned remains that consisted of teeth, hair, and bone fragments, were found to belong to Savannah. Police reported they used dental records to help identify the remains. According to the Ozark County Times, the girl’s burned remains were found in that burn pile just 400 yards from the house on the property.

Police found the remains in an advanced stage of decomposition. They believe it was due to some kind of chemical used on the girl’s body. The authorities found that lye soap was being made on the property in several drums.

Back in August authorities searched the house and property three times. At that time they seized some of the items they found, such as a meat grinder, three knives, and 26 bottles of lye. Police also took notebooks, a box of girl’s clothing, and 20 boxes of bone fragments, according to the court files.

Fox News reports, “Ozark County Prosecutor John Garrabrant confirmed Rebecca Ruud was charged with first-degree murder and other counts in the killing of Savannah Leckie.”

[Featured Image by British Official/AP Images]