The stepmother of a girl who went missing and is considered dead by law enforcement missed a court date, and a warrant for her arrest has been issued.
Kayla Montgomery, the stepmother of Harmony Montgomery, missed a court date at the Hillsborough Superior Court in New Hampshire on Thursday. Prosecutors then requested that an arrest warrant be granted, which a judge approved.
NBC 10 Boston reports that Ms Montgomery was arrested in June by the Manchester Police Department on two counts of perjury for lying to a grand jury in relation to the search for her missing stepdaughter.
According to court documents, Ms Montgomery lied to a grand jury about her location and the time of a work shift.
She was previously charged with theft by deception when police found she had falsely claimed that her stepdaughter was living with her and collected welfare benefits based on that claim.
Ms Montgomery has pleaded not guilty to those allegations.
Harmony was last seen in 2019, when she was five years old. Law enforcement did not learn she was missing until a year later. She was considered a missing person until August, when police admitted they believe she was likely killed sometime in December 2019.
The case is now being investigated as a homicide. While no remains have been found, the Manchester Police Department said it found "biological evidence" that led them to believe she had been murdered.
Her father, Adam Montgomery, was arrested in January on second-degree assault charges for an incident in 2019, and a misdemeanour charge of interference with custody and two misdemeanour charges of endangering of a child, all of which were tied to Harmony's disappearance.
He was accused of striking Harmony in the face in 2019, resulting in the assault charge.
Mr Montgomery was arrested again in April on gun charges.
Michael Montgomery, his brother, previously accused of being "physically abusive" toward the girl, and his uncle, Kevin Montgomery, claimed he saw the girl with a black eye and said he had "bashed her around his house”.
Harmony's birth mother, Crystal Sorey, last saw her on Easter 2019 during a video chat, and told police that the girl looked "frightened”. Ms Sorey lost custody of Harmony to her husband a year prior due to substance abuse issues.
According to Boston 25, Manchester police searched Mr Montgomery's apartment and removed a refrigerator and floorboards.