SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - The family of a 6-year-old girl who police say was abducted, raped and murdered by a neighbor man released a statement on Wednesday.
Sierra Newbold wasa found dead in a West Jordan canal on June 26
. On Tuesday, prosecutors and police announced murder and rape charges
against 41-year-old Terry Lee Black, a man who lived in the family's neighborhood.
The following is a portion of that statement:"At this time we want to express our gratitude to the West Jordan Police Department, and especially Detective James Bigelow, for the marvelous police work that brought the pieces together that connected Terry Lee Black with the murder of Sierra. This has allowed at least a small measure of closure for our family. We also wish to thank our family, friends, community members, and even total strangers who have offered love, prayers, and support for our family."
"We offer our sympathy to the Black family during this sad time since they too are grieving a loss. We want everyone to plainly understand that we hold no animosity in our hearts toward Terry Black’s wife and children. We fully recognize that they played no part in this tragedy, and hope that the community and the media will be sensitive to their pain and gentle in their treatment of them."
"We are still trying to comprehend and reconcile the newly revealed developments in the case. We anticipate it will take us a very long time to fully come to terms with what has occurred. Therefore, we are continuing with our earlier decision not to provide interviews or make further public statements at this time. The time is still not right for us, and we do not wish to talk about Sierra’s death in public. This remains an extremely private matter for our family, and we still wish to continue our grieving in private. Thank you for continuing to respect our wishes."