Police discovered “immature human skeletal remains” Thursday in a garage at the Toledo home where missing toddler Elaina Steinfurth was reportedly last seen.
At a press conference Friday morning, Toledo Police Chief Derrick Diggs said an autopsy is being conducted to determine whether the remains are those of the 18-month-old who was reported missing on June 2.
“We have found what we believe may be baby Elaina,” Diggs said.
Diggs said work will continue through the weekend to identify the remains.
Police executed a search warrant Thursday at the home of Steven King, the ex-boyfriend of Elaina's mother, Angela Steinfurth.
Police Capt. Wes Bombrys said Friday that the remains were found in a box on a shelf in the rafters in the detached garage.
Police said the garage was searched previously and they would not speculate on how long the remains had been there. Bombrys said specific information led them to return to the garage Thursday.
Read more: Police search river for baby Elaina
Diggs said the investigation is still ongoing and active. He denied that police “dropped the ball” by not discovering the remains sooner.
“We had a lot of deception taking place being told to us by a variety of sources in this community,” Diggs said.
Bombrys stated that police had searched the garage to the best of their ability earlier in the investigation, but it was a very difficult location to search.
Lucas County Coroner Thomas Patrick confirmed to HLN Thursday that a box that “appears to contain human remains” was recovered from the address on Federal Street. Patrick said it was unknown whose remains they are and a complete examination would be performed Friday.
Elaina’s father T.J. Steinfurth said he was “irate” about Thursday’s discovery, WNWO reported, but he did not comment on what police told him about it.
Elaina’s mother Angela Steinfurth claimed the girl disappeared from King’s house on Federal Street on June 2 after she put her down for a nap, according to a police report obtained by HLN.
In the weeks that followed, authorities conducted extensive searches of the surrounding area and the Maumee River, but Elaina was not found.
Angela Steinfurth was indicted on a charge of obstruction of justice in late June. The indictment alleged that she communicated “false information” about a crime. Steven King was indicted on the same charge in August.
King appeared in court for a pretrial hearing on his obstruction charge Thursday morning. His trial is scheduled for September 16.
Angela Steinfurth was in court Wednesday, but her pretrial hearing was continued until September 25. Her attorney had requested additional time to review evidence in the case.
King and Steinfurth have both pleaded not guilty. No other charges have been filed in connection with Elaina’s disappearance.
Prosecutor Julia Bates said Friday it would be “silly and foolish” to speculate at this point on if or when additional charges may be filed in the case.