The man suspected of killing his wife and abducting an 8-year-old girl was found dead of a suicide in an expansive Washington, D.C. park, police said Monday.
Authorities were actually searching for the body of little Relisha Rudd, who has been missing since Feb. 26 and is presumed dead, when they found Khalil Tatum, 51, in Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens in the northeast section of the city.
"This discovery was a shock for us," D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier said at a press conference Monday, according to WRC-TV. "We were focused on finding Relisha. There's a lot of evidence to be processed from what we found [Monday]."
A foot search for little Relisha Rudd — who was last seen with Tatum on March 1 — was launched last week at the 700-acre park after investigators learned the wanted man bought tools likely used to bury the child’s body.
Police say Tatum — also suspected of killing his 51-year-old wife, Andrea — was spotted at a nearby store buying supplies that included contractor-sized garbage bags and lime, which can be used to speed up the decomposition of a dead body, police said.
Witnesses also reported seeing Kahlil, a janitor at the city homeless shelter where Relisha lived, spending a lot of time at the park on March 2.
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