BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) - The murder of Isabella Tennant sent shock waves through the Niagara Falls community.
Bella was first reported missing in Niagara Falls Monday morning. A few hours later, her lifeless body was found in an alley garbage can.
Bella was staying with her great grandmother while her mom worked a night shift. Police say 16-year old John Freeman, a neighbor who occasionally helped the elderly woman, choked the young girl to death. 18-year Tyler Best is accused of helping Freeman dispose of her small body.
It was Best who went to police and told them where her body was. Captain William Thompson from Niagara Falls Police says, "He was able to lead us to the location of the victim. She was in a trash can underneath some bags of trash in a garbage bag
Investigators still do not have a motive. There were no signs of sexual abuse.
At their arraignments Tuesday, both Freeman and Best pleaded not guilty.
Family and friends gathered in Buffalo Saturday morning to say goodbye to a life cut tragically short.
5-year-old Isabella Tennant was described as a funny and bright young girl who was very much looking to forward to starting kindergarten Monday. But instead, her family laid her to rest at St. Adelbert's cemetery.
John Carey, a friend of the Tennant family says, "She was a sweet little doll, a little angel. Always liked to smile, I feel so bad for the family."
Close to a thousand people filled the inside of St. Louis' church. Ever since news broke about Bella's death, there's been a huge outpouring of support from the community
She's in a better place right now but the family needs all the support they can get right now and that's the main thing," says Joe Yamarino.
Before Saturday's funeral, we received a statement from Bella's father, Michael.
"The loss of my beloved daughter, Isabella, has shaken me to the core and left me overwhelmed by the wave of emotions I experience every minute of every day since learning of her death. She is my angel and words cannot express the agony that screams inside my heart.
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