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'How is there more to the story?': Family devastated after 2 more adults charged in death of Alberta girl

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Two more men have been charged in the death of an eight-year-old girl earlier this year.

The girl's remains were found in Maskwacis in April.

Previously, a 27-year-old woman was charged with first-degree murder and indignity to a dead body, and a 25-year-old man and Edward Nievera, 67, were charged with accessory to murder and indignity to a dead body.

The names of the man and the woman have not been released to protect the other children related to the victim.

A publication ban has also been imposed on the girl's identity.

On Friday, the Edmonton Police Service announced Shaden Lightning, 21, and Raighne Stoney, 36, had been charged with accessory to murder and indignity to a dead body.

Investigators were called to a home at 87 Avenue and 165 Street in Edmonton on April 24 for a welfare check on the girl.

Officers weren't able to find her and an investigation was launched.

On April 29, the girl's remains were located on the Samson Cree Nation in Maskwacis.

An autopsy determined she died of blunt-force trauma.

"We want to thank the RCMP in Maskwacis and Wetaskiwin for their assistance with this investigation," Staff Sgt. Colin Leathem with the EPS homicide section said in a Friday release. "Needless to say, this was an exceptionally distressing investigation to work on."

"While nothing can change the horror of what occurred, we hope that apprehending those responsible can provide some measure of justice to those who knew and loved this little girl."

Police say no further arrests are pending.

'WE WILL CONTINUE TO TELL HER STORY'

Two of the girl's aunts spoke to CTV News Edmonton on Friday after learning the news about the additional charges.

The women say they are devastated to learn a total of five adults are now facing charges.

"I couldn't help but cry and think how, like, how is there more to the story? How are we just learning that there's more to this story than what we've been told? Honestly, it's heartbreaking," one of her aunts said.

Her aunts say the girl's death has had a devastating impact on her family.

"When someone is taken from you by someone else's hands, it's harder to grieve because we won't ever have those answers as to why," the second aunt said.

"We don't ever get to see her again. We will never get to hear her laugh again."

"That's one of the hardest things that I think our family had to ever deal with," the first aunt said.

An eight-year-old Edmonton girl, who cannot legally be identified, was found dead in in Maskwacis, Alta., on April 29, 2023. (Supplied)

The women say they're sharing their story so their niece isn't forgotten.

"She doesn't have a voice anymore. And that is what hurts so much: So much happened to this baby, and we will continue to be her voice," the first aunt said. "We will continue to tell her story."

The women say they found out the news about the charges on social media and were not notified by police.

An EPS spokesperson says police have been in communication with the girl's next of kin throughout the investigation.

With files from CTV News Edmonton's Jessica Robb

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