Maleah Davis Case: Mother faces criticism after fiance arrested

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HOUSTON (KTRK) - A man accused in the disappearance of a Texas four-year-old was scheduled appeared in court Monday, but his hearing was rescheduled.

Maleah Davis has been missing for more than a week. Derion Vence, the former fiance of Maleah's mother, is charged with tampering with a corpse. Maleah's mother showed up for the court hearing and faced anger from the community.

In a photo given to ABC 13 by a police source, four-year-old Maleah Davis is seen walking to her apartment following her mother's then-fiancee Derion Vence. The image was captured on April 30th. Investigators say she was never seen walking out of the home again.

Her mother, Brittany Bowens, flew out of town that same day.

Three days later, Vence reported Maleah missing. He is now charged in connection to that disappearance.

The 26-year-old with no criminal history is now facing a charge of tampering with a corpse.

Investigators say surveillance has Vence leaving the apartment sometime after Maleah's mother flew out of town but before he reported the little girl missing. He's carrying a black trash bag inside a laundry basket.

Police say they found traces of blood inside the family apartment and a cadaver dog hit on the trunk of the family's car after it was found in Missouri City. Inside that trunk detectives say was a laundry basket and gasoline can.

Vence was arrested Saturday at a family home in Sugar Land.

When reached by phone Monday, his family members were not receptive. We know he recently worked at a pharmacy compounding company in Sugar Land. The company spokesperson promised a statement to us but has not yet provided it.

Meanwhile, the mother of Maleah Davis faced harsh criticism and questioning while leaving court Monday. A crowd could be heard chanting and yelling at her as she left. She maintains it was Vence who killed her daughter.

Vence remains behind bars on a newly reduced $45,000 bond.