Photos: Talaija Dorsey case

After five exhaustive days of searching by law enforcement and countless prayers offered up by the community for a safe return, St. James Parish Sheriff Willy Martin Jr., found the body of Talaija Dorsey at the edge of a cane field Sunday near a wooded area on La. 3127.

The discovery comes five days after the 12-year-old St. James teen was discovered missing.

“It didn’t end up the way we was hoping,” Martin said at a Sunday afternoon press conference announcing the discovery of Talaija’s body.

Talaija had been missing since about 7 a.m. Tuesday, when a friend stopped by her Pecan Street house so the two could go to summer camp together.

When her mother, Emma Dorsey, went to get Talaija from her bedroom, the child was gone. Talaija was last seen by her younger sister at about 5 a.m. Tuesday

Sunday’s press conference was held at the St. James Parish Sheriff’s Office’s Fleet Maintenance depot on La. 3127, near La. 20, and about four miles away from where Martin stumbled upon Dorsey’s body behind a thick, grassy area in Vacherie at about 10:20 a.m. He said he estimated Talaija’s body had been there since Tuesday.

Deputies arrested Talaija’s mother’s fiancé, John D. Celestine, 43, Wednesday after finding a pair of Talaija’s slippers in an out-of-use white minivan that had been placed on blocks in the front yard of the family’s home. He was booked on obstruction of justice and a count of false communications.

More Stories