The mystery of six-year-old Faye Swetlik’s tragic death still continues to haunt the little South Carolina town where she lived with her mother. In the latest developments, law enforcement authorities believe that male neighbor Coty Scott Taylor, whose body was found in his home shortly after Faye’s was discovered in the woods, might have been a suicide case, and that the two deaths are very much “linked”.
Law enforcement officials in Cayce, South Carolina, believe Faye died sometime on Monday, the very day she disappeared, and as nationwide unrest continues to develop over why no Amber Alert was issued even after three full days of Faye missing, police is investigating the case as a homicide without having updated the public about the time, or cause of Faye’s death.
However, Lexington County coroner Margaret Fisher, who ordered autopsies on both the bodies on Saturday, will provide information on Taylor’s death, believed to be suicide. As of now, the Lexington County Coroner’s Office is expected to officially release more information on both the autopsies, on Tuesday.
After practically vanishing from her home on Monday afternoon, Faye’s body was recovered by Cayce public safety director Byron Snellgrove in a wooded area in the Churchill Heights neighborhood – where both she and Taylor lived – at around 11:00 a.m. EST on Thursday. The discovery of Taylor’s body at his 602 Picadilly Square home was made shortly after. Even though no arrests have been made, and the community is not believed to be in danger, Sgt. Evan Antley of the Cayce Department of Public Safety said Friday that the police had found a “critical piece of evidence” on Thursday while going through Taylor’s trash can, thus prompting them to follow a trash truck and dig through the neighborhood’s trash as part of their investigation.
According to Antley, Taylor was “not a friend” or a family member of Faye’s. They were just neighbors who lived less than 150 feet from each other. Taylor didn’t’ have a criminal record, and “was not known to law enforcement” either. Antley said on Friday: “We have no suspects at this time, we have made no arrests, and we’re not seeking any persons of interests at this time.” He also revealed that officers had spoken with Taylor, who “had been inside his home” during the investigation as officers went door-to-door asking neighbors to help and cooperate in the search for Faye before she was found. Cayce police have only revealed that the bodies are linked by evidence but provided no further information.
Taylor’s Facebook page reveals he was a graduate of Bluffton High School in Bluffton, South Carolina; he went on to study maths at the University of South Carolina in Columbia and later worked as a manager at Jimmy John’s. Faye, a first-grader at Springdale Elementary School in West Columbia, was last seen playing outside her Londonderry Lane home around 3:45 p.m. on Monday. She reportedly rode the bus home from school that day and had arrived at her residence “like any other day” before her mother called 911 at around 5 p.m. when she realized Faye was missing.
Speaking about the shocking developments of the case, Antley said on Friday: “I want everyone to continue to pray for Faye Swetlik. This has been a horrible situation for our community and our department.” Faye’s body has been escorted back to Cayce by law enforcement agencies from MUSC in Charleston, where they performed the autopsy on her. Her body was found after more than 250 officers from over 20 law enforcement agencies, including the FBI and South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), used tracking dogs and helicopters to search the Churchill Heights neighborhood, stretching just past the one-mile radius. According to WIS TV, the neighborhood has been shut down with nobody being allowed in or out.