Volunteers resumed their search for Maleah Thursday morning after weather halted it the day before.
Texas EquuSearch said it is in a race against the weather, which is expected to bring heavy rounds of rain between now and Saturday. The search has been focused on the vehicle in the southwest side of town.
However, weather could shut down the search for three days.
Police have found the stepfather's story to be inconsistent.
Darion Vence originally told officers he was attacked while checking his tire over the weekend. But Sugar Land police say his story changed multiple times when they questioned him.
According to police, Vence showed up at Sugar Land Methodist Hospital on Saturday night, where an off-duty officer noticed fresh wounds on him. Vence claimed to be the victim of a roadside attack by three Hispanic men the day before while on his way to pick up the girl's mother from Bush Intercontinental Airport.
Police also initially stated Vence was with Maleah and his 1-year-old son when he was left unconscious. He stated that he regained consciousness late Saturday afternoon on the side of Highway 6 near First Colony Mall. His son was with him but Maleah was not.
Vence's son is now in the care of a relative.
On Wednesday, the Sugar Land Police Department revealed the original story had changed while Vence was questioned.
"During the initial interview, the man's story did change several times and some of what he told us just didn't add up," said Doug Adolph, the spokesperson for Sugar Land police.
Houston police took command of the investigation since the attack reportedly happened in the city limits.
SLPD also revealed the family's Nissan Altima, which was reported stolen after the attack on Vence, was seen driving around Sugar Land at 3 p.m. Saturday, just several hours before he told police that he regained consciousness.
So far, Vence is not facing any charges, and police have not considered him a suspect in Maleah's disappearance.
On Tuesday, Maleah's biological father, Craig Davis, spoke for the first time since the search began to ABC7's sister station ABC13 Eyewitness News. He said he wanted to speak directly with Vence about what happened.
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"I'm not putting the blame on anybody," Craig said. "I just need the questions that aren't answered to be answered. There are so many unanswered questions. It's not for the public to answer to them for me. It's not for the police to answer them for me. It's not for the news to answer them for me. It's for Darion to answer for me."
Earlier this week, ABC13 learned the little girl, along with two of her siblings, was taken from her home last August as CPS investigated her head injuries. In court documents from Jan. 25, doctors couldn't confirm whether Maleah's injuries were caused by abuse, and due to this, CPS recommended Maleah and her siblings be returned to their family. They were back home by the following month.
The family told Eyewitness News the injuries were from an accidental fall.
JUST IN: medical professionals did not believe the family’s story of how Maleah hit her head causing severe head trauma, still she and her two brothers were returned to mom and stepfather in February. @abc13houston details at 6pm. #FINDMALEAH #MaleahDavis pic.twitter.com/BIkc8SQngA— Shelley Childers (@shelleyabc13) May 8, 2019
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