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UPDATE: Police Believe Remains Are Lonzie Barton's

hackney_at_scene.jpg
Ryan Benk
/
WJCT News

Updated: 4:30 p.m.:

Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams says investigators believe they found the body of missing Jacksonville toddler Lonzie Barton on Monday. 

The prime suspect in the boy's disappearance, Reuben Ebron, was scheduled to go on trial next week, and jury selection was set to begin Monday afternoon in his charges of child neglect, lying to police and tampering of evidence.

But early Monday morning, Ebron helped lead police to the area where the body was found. The medical examiner's office has not yet confirmed the identity. 

State Attorney Angela Corey says it's possible more charges will be brought against Ebron. 

Updated 2:20 p.m.:  

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office has moved back its press conference to 4 p.m. instead of 3 p.m. WJCT's Ryan Benk will be on the scene. 

Updated 2 p.m.:

Police will speak at 3 p.m. for the first time about remains found Monday morning in a wooded area on the Southside.

Several sources tell News4Jax that investigators went to the area to search for missing toddler Lonzie Barton, and over the next few hours the medical examiner's office, State Attorney Angela Corey and numerous homicide detectives arrived at the scene. About 1:15 p.m., Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams arrived at the scene. About 30 minutes later, Chief Tom Hackney, the face of JSO's investigation into the Lonzie Barton case, also arrived.

"They were directed to the area by Ruben Ebron," law enforcement sources told News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith.

A neighbor told News4Jax that he saw Ebron in the back of a police vehicle near the scene of the search Sunday night.

Ebron on Monday waived his right to a speedy trial on charges of child neglect, lying to police and tampering with evidence. Jury selection had been slated to begin Monday for that trial.

Original story below:

Police have found remains while searching for a body in a wooded area on the Southside. Several sources tell News4Jax that investigators went to the area to search for missing toddler Lonzie Barton.

"They were directed to the area by Ruben Ebron," law enforcement sources told News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith.

A medical examiner's vehicle was seen entering the area about 11:15 a.m. Monday. A neighbor said police had been in the area since Sunday night.

map of search area
Credit News4Jax

Police have searched the area near 9B and Philips Highway, which is near Bayard, repeatedly for Lonzie, who disappeared last July.

The search was part of an “ongoing investigation,” the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said, but officials would not say which case was involved.

Lonzie was reported missing July 24 by Ruben Ebron, who was dating his mother, Lonna Barton, at the time. 

Ebron told police that his car had been stolen with the 21-month-old inside. 

Police quickly announced that they believed Ebron's account was a lie and later released video evidence that investigators said showed Ebron ditching the car and then running back to his apartment before he called 911 to report the missing boy.

Ebron on Monday waived his right to a speedy trial on charges of child neglect, lying to police and tampering with evidence.

Searchers looked for Lonzie for weeks, and police have long said they believe the toddler is dead.

Officials would not confirm whether the search was connected to Lonzie's case.

Copyright 2016 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.