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Investigators find child’s remains in Hepburn Township

Local law enforcement and the FBI search a property for the alleged buried remains of Marie Snyder's two minor female children in Hepburn Township on Saturday. Local law enforcement and the FBI search a property for the alleged buried remains of Marie Snyder's two minor female children in Hepburn Township on Saturday morning. SUN-GAZETTE

***UPDATE: Human remains of what appears to be a small child were recovered from the Livermore Road property today according to Old Lycoming Police Chief Chris Kriner. The human remains will be sent to a pathologist for further review. Investigators are continuing the search for the second child.

FBI agents and local law enforcement are searching for the allegedly buried remains of two girls who have been missing since 2015 on a Hepburn Township property.

Their mother, Marie Snyder, 32, of 653 Livermore Road, is in custody alongside her partner, Echo Butler, on charges of child endangerment and obstructing child abuse cases after they allegedly fled their residence.

Meanwhile, Snyder’s 7-year-old son has been taken into custody by the Lycoming County Children and Youth Services, and is “doing well and no health-related issues have been reported,” according to Old Lycoming Township Police Chief Chris Kriner.

Children and Youth Services have allegedly been trying to contact Snyder and determine the whereabouts of her two daughters for around two months after a medical provider reported concerns of neglect for the boy in early September, according to Robert Mausteller of the Old Lycoming Township Police.

The girls were allegedly last seen by their father, Joshua Snyder, in 2015, and the last time they had contact with medical, court or other personnel was that year as well.

Another resident at 653 Livermore Road later allegedly told police that while Snyder’s son has lived at that address since 2015, the two daughters have been living at an unknown friend’s residence out of state, according to Mausteller.

Meanwhile, neighbors allegedly told Old Lycoming Township police officers that while they have seen Snyder’s son who is in custody, they have not seen her daughters, Mausteller said.

Snyder allegedly told Children and Youth Services that her two daughters were staying with a friend because she did not have a bed, and refused to provide the friend’s name on multiple occasions throughout September, according to Mausteller.

The last such occasion allegedly occurred Sept. 25, when Children and Youth Services spoke with Echo Butler at the Livermore Road residence, and to Snyder on the phone. The next day, property owner Ronald Butler allegedly told Children and Youth Services that Snyder, her son and Echo Butler packed their belongings and left the night before.

Snyder and Echo Butler were taken into custody by a joint United States Marshals Service and Lycoming County Sheriff’s Office Fugitive Task Force on an Old Lycoming Township Police arrest warrant.

State police and county detectives are assisting with the final search warrant to find the alleged remains of the girls on the Hepburn Township property.

District Judge William Solomon arraigned the two women after they were arrested Nov. 4.

“This continues to be an active investigation. Additional information may be provided at a later time,” Kriner told the media.

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