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A woman was arrested after the body of a child believed missing was found in a motel room in East Texas


A woman has been arrested after a child’s body was found in a motel room in East Texas, authorities said Wednesday.

The body is believed to be that of Samuel Olson, 6, who was reported missing May 27, according to Houston Police Assistant Chief Heather Morris. She said police discovered the body Tuesday in a motel in Jasper, Texas, about 135 miles northeast of the boy’s Houston home.

Jasper police arrested Theresa Balboa, the girlfriend of Samuel Olson’s father, at the motel, Morris said at a news conference Wednesday.

Balboa is charged with evidence tampering, Morris said.

“Once this case has been fully investigated, investigators will be presenting the case to the district attorney’s office for additional charges, if appropriate,” she said.

Morris said the medical examiner will determine if the body is Samuel’s.

Tonya Olson, Samuel’s grandmother, told CNN in an email that the family is “completely devastated.”

“Shocked and so many other things that words cannot explain at the moment. We are grieving as a family. None of us can wrap our heads around this,” Tonya Olson said. “My son or anyone in our family had absolutely nothing to do with this.”

How the investigation unfolded

Samuel Olson hadn’t been to school since April 30, Houston police said. He was reported missing on May 27, and police responded to Olson’s home, where they spoke to Dalton Olson and Balboa, according to Morris.

Morris said police do not yet know when exactly the boy was last seen.

Balboa told the officers that earlier that day, she was with Samuel at the home when a woman she recognized as his mother and “an unknown officer” told her that she would go to jail for kidnapping if she did not return Samuel to his mother, Morris said.

Morris said the boy’s father spoke with the mother after hearing Balboa’s story, but the mother told him that Samuel wasn’t with her.

Authorities concluded Samuel’s mother was at her home on the day her son disappeared and found inconsistencies in Balboa’s statements, Morris said.

Meanwhile, the Jasper Police Department received an anonymous tip from Crime Stoppers, which led officers to a motel in Jasper where they “initiated contact at the motel with Ms. Balboa and eventually discovered the body of a young child,” Morris said.

It’s unclear whether Balboa has an attorney for this case. She had been charged in November with assault for allegedly attempting to choke Samuel’s father, Morris said.

CNN reached out to the attorney representing her on the assault charge but did not receive a response.

Ericka Miller, press secretary for the Texas Department of Public Safety, said the investigation into Samuel’s death is being conducted by the Houston Police Department, Jasper Police Department and Texas Department of Public Safety Texas Ranger Division.

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