Human remains found could be Florida 16-year-old Autumn McClure missing for 20 years

Girl last seen in May 2004 at Volusia Mall
Posted at 10:49 PM, Feb 29, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-29 22:59:46-05

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. — Investigators in Florida believe they found the remains of a teenager who disappeared nearly two decades ago.

Crews on Wednesday excavated a suspected burial site in an Ormond Beach-area mobile home park.

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office said they found human remains, which they believe could be Autumn Lane McClure.

Detectives believe she was killed and buried at that site.

"There really never is a 'cold case,'" Sheriff Michael Chitwood said Thursday during a media briefing. "The men and women that are assigned to our major case unit, and all of our investigative units, that’s what they understand."

The 16-year-old was last seen in May 2004 when her boyfriend dropped her off at the Volusia Mall.

The investigation has remained open.

The suspect in McClure's murder, Brian Christopher Donley Jr., died nearly two years ago at the age of 49.

"I'm hoping to God that when he took his last breath on May 26, 2022, that maybe he had a vision of where the hell he was headed," Chitwood said.

Official identification of McClure is pending, but the sheriff's office said they have been in contact with her family to notify them of the discovery.