Search of landfill for suburban Detroit teen’s remains ends

LENOX TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Police have ended a five-month search at a rural landfill for the remains of a 17-year-old suburban Detroit girl who disappeared in early January.

Investigators have said they believe Zion Foster’s body was placed in a dumpster, which later was emptied into a garbage truck and taken about 40 miles (65 kilometers) northeast of Detroit to Lenox Township.

Searchers began combing through debris and garbage at the end of May at Pine Tree Acres landfill but came up empty even after going through 3,500 truckloads — 7,500 tons (6,800 metric tons) — of material from Michigan and Canada.

Police believed they were in the right area based on GPS readings from the truck and other evidence.

“Ending the search without recovering Zion’s remains is very difficult for all of us,” Detroit Police Chief James White said Friday. ”I can only imagine the pain Zion’s family is going through, and we all certainly share in that pain.”

No one has been charged in her death, though a cousin, Jaylin Brazier, admitted in court that he was present when she died. He is in prison for lying to investigators.

Investigators have submitted a warrant package to the Wayne County prosecutor’s office for review.

“While this operation has concluded, our investigation has not, and we are confident in the work our investigators have done,” White said.

Zion, a high school senior from Eastpointe, was wearing a fast-food uniform when she was last seen. Eastpointe borders Detroit, but Detroit police took charge because the death occurred in the city.

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