Community invited to attend candlelight vigil to honor Taylor Rose Williams

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A group of people who have been following the search for a 5-year-old girl who was reported missing last week from Jacksonville are planning to hold a vigil in her honor.

The gathering for Taylor Rose Williams will be held at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 23 at Losco Park.

Warrant: May last time anyone other than Taylor's mother saw girl alive

Those planning to attend are encouraged to bring candles and toys. The group hosting the vigil also plans to take donations for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

Key events in the search for Taylor

On the morning of Nov. 6, Brianna Williams called the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office to report her daughter missing from her Ivy Street home. Volunteers and officers began searching the area for Taylor, but some Brentwood neighbors told News4Jax that they never saw a child living at the house. An Amber Alert was issued before noon and later in the day, the search extended to a Southside apartment complex where Williams used to live.

Sheriff Mike Williams said that while family members have been cooperating, Brianna Williams stopped cooperating Nov. 7. The sheriff on Monday named Brianna Williams a person of interest in Taylor's disappearance.

Also on Monday, the search for Taylor extended even further, with the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department Urban Search and Rescue Team and JSO homicide and missing persons detectives traveling to the Demopolis area of Alabama, where her mother is from and has friends, and her hometown of Linden, Alabama. Three sources told News4Jax that authorities pinged Brianna Williams' phone in Alabama, and that’s what led them to search there. The Sheriff's Office would not confirm that information.

Investigators announced Tuesday afternoon that human remains had been found in a wooded area in western Alabama during the search for Taylor Rose Williams. Sheriff Williams and State Attorney Melissa Nelson said the remains are believed to be those of Taylor.

The Sheriff's Office is awaiting positive identification of the remains found on County Road 44 off Highway 28 in Marengo County, Alabama, until forensics tests are completed, according to the Demopolis Police Department. It’s unknown how long that will take or how long it might take to determine a cause and manner of death.

Soon after the remains were uncovered, News4Jax began to learn that Brianna Williams had been hospitalized. Brianna Williams was flown Tuesday to UF Health hospital in downtown Jacksonville after a suicide attempt at NAS Jacksonville, police said. The sheriff announced Tuesday that Brianna Williams had been charged with child neglect and giving false information in the investigation into Taylor's disappearance.

Brianna Williams had still been reporting for duty as of Tuesday morning and remained administratively assigned to the Tactical Operations Centers at NAS Jacksonville as of early Tuesday evening, according to Navy officials.

A first appearance was scheduled for 1 p.m. Wednesday, but at 11 a.m., police confirmed Brianna Williams was still in the hospital and would not be making an appearance in court Wednesday. She's held on a $1.1 million bond. Court records show her next court date is scheduled for Dec. 4. At last check, she was reportedly in serious condition.

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About the Author:

Carianne Luter is an Award-Winning Digital Media and Engagement Manager for News4Jax and has worked at Channel 4 since December 2015. She won "Best Social Media Engagement Strategy" during the Local Media Association 2022 Digital Innovation Awards. She graduated from the University of North Florida with a communication degree.