TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Police believe a body discovered in Tampa Friday morning is a 14-year-old girl who was reported missing in Temple Terrace.
Police said the body was found in the 100 block of W. Floribraska Avenue around 4 a.m. Friday.
The person had suffered an apparent gunshot wound.
Sam Johnson says he was up early Friday when he heard three loud noises. He quickly realized, those were gunshots.
“I locked our back door, made sure both doors were locked,” Johnson said.
Later in the day, he went to his back porch and saw police and crime scene tape feet away from his home. He put two and two together.
“It’s definitely jarring,” Johnson said. “It’s frustrating, it’s upsetting.”
On Friday afternoon, police asked for the public’s help in identifying the body, saying the person had a faded tattoo with on her right forearm that said “Arthur” with a heart above the name.
Hours later, police said they believed the person was Nilexia B. Alexander, a 14-year-old girl who ran away from her home in Temple Terrace. Police said Nilexia was known to have spent time in the Jackson Heights area. They are still working to confirm her identity.
The circumstances surrounding her death remain unclear, police said.
Anyone who may have seen Nilexia in the last few days is asked to call police at their non-emergency line, 813-231-6130.