FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – The FBI is searching the Monarch Hill Landfill in northern Broward as part of their investigation into the disappearance of Georgia mom Leila Cavett.
The FBI confirmed the search of the site, at 2700 Wiles Road, began Thursday, October 1st.
More than a dozen crew members were digging through a section of the landfill and several trucks with heavy equipment have been brought in as well.
The FBI has set up a number of tents.
Cavett,21 was last seen on the night of July 25, just hours before her two-year-old son, Kamdyn, was found wandering alone in a shirt and diaper at a Miramar apartment complex. The mother and son had arrived in South Florida the day before she went missing. Investigators have determined that she spent time in several Broward County communities, including Hollywood, Miramar and Fort Lauderdale. Her vehicle was found unattended July 28 in Hollywood.
Investigators arrested Shanon Ryan, 38, and charged him with kidnapping Cavett’s son with the intent of collecting a ransom, reward or other benefit and lying to a federal officer. He has not been charged in Cavett’s disappearance at this time.
In early August Cavett’s father and sister came to South Florida to assist in the search.
Curtis Cavett said she would never leave Kamdyn.
“He’S everything to her. Kamdyn is her life, that’s the love of her live. She’s never going to leave him, never,” he said.
Ryan, a self-proclaimed ‘witch’ from Alabama, claimed to be the last person to see Cavett. Ryan posted a nearly hour-long video on his Facebook page claiming to know Cavett and to have been the last person to see her. He said he’s committed crimes in the past but has “transformed” into the “God” he is today.
In a criminal complaint filed in Fort Lauderdale, the FBI said video evidence does not support Ryan’s claims that he saw Leila Cavett and her son get into another person’s vehicle at a Hollywood RaceTrac gas station.
Investigators also say he bought odor eliminator, duct tape and extra-large garbage bags around the time of her disappearance.
Court documents said Ryan told investigators he has known Cavett since around January 2019, and that she had come to Florida to sell him her pickup truck.
He told investigators they arranged to meet at the RaceTrac on Hollywood Blvd. That’s where Ryan said he met up with Cavett and her son on July 25th, around 2:30 p.m., and he gave her $3,000 cash for her truck.
Ryan reportedly said that the three of them then went to Fort Lauderdale Beach in the afternoon in his 2004 Gold Lexus ES 330, leaving the truck behind. Ryan allegedly told investigators that when they went back to the gas station, they parked at the pumps. Ryan told investigators that around 2:30 a.m. on July 26, Cavett and her son left in a dark sedan with several men, according to the report.
He said that was the last time he saw them.
“Law enforcement reviewed the video surveillance footage from the RaceTrac gas station to determine whether L.C. (Cavett) left that morning in a dark sedan. The video surveillance did not show Ryan’s car at the pumps where he described it, nor did it show L.C. leaving in a dark sedan,” according to the arrest affidavit.
WATCH: Surveillance Video Of Last Known Location Of Leila Cavett
In reviewing surveillance video from the area where Kamdyn was found, investigators spotted Ryan’s Gold Lexus directly in front of the apartment complex only minutes before he was found. They said Ryan’s Lexus is very distinguishable because it is missing the front bumper.
In reviewing surveillance video from the Racetrac gas station, investigators said Ryan’s car left the gas station at approximately 8:15 a.m. that morning and returned at approximately 8:38 a.m., “which is consistent with the time frame in which the child was abandoned and recovered,” according to the report.
The Racetrac gas station is a short drive, less than 3 miles, from where the child was found.
A check of cellphone records shows Ryan was in the area where Kamdyn was found, said investigators.
According to the arrest affidavit, Ryan had used Cavett’s credit card to make several purchases at the RaceTrac and the nearby Walmart on July 26th. One purchase at Walmart was for Hefty Strong 39 Gallon Extra Large Trash Drawstring Bags and two boxes of Extra Strength Carpet Odor Eliminator.
Approximately, 15 minutes later, video surveillance and receipts show that Ryan went back and purchased a roll of Advanced Strength Duct Tape.
On August 9th, 2020, Ryan posted on his Facebook page about his relationship with Cavett and how he had to cover a window on her truck with a garbage bag because it was broken and damaged.
However, video surveillance footage of Cavett’s arrival at the gas station showed all of the windows to be intact as was the rear mirror.
Investigators got a warrant to search the truck. They found the driver’s side window was broken and the driver’s side visor was bent out of its ordinary position.
“Among other things, law enforcement recovered shovels with small droplets of a red substance on them,” according to the arrest affidavit.
A friend of Ryan’s told investigators that he attempted to sell him the truck on July 26th for $1,000.
On August 15th, federal agents searched Ryan’s Lexus and found a half-empty container of all-purpose cleaner with bleach, numerous black trash bags, and a white powdery substance under the front passenger seat.
In interviewing workers at the RaceTrac, one said they remembered him using the gas station’s dumpster. Another employee said they remembered seeing children’s toys and women’s clothing inside the dumpster on July 26th, said investigators.
“On August 15, 2020, a federal search warrant was executed on the iPhone Ryan was using and had in his possession. A forensic extraction of the iPhone revealed Google searches from July 26, 2020. Specifically. Law enforcement recovered a Google search at 12:01 AM for “What day does commercial garbage pickup for Hollywood, Florida.” Additionally, law enforcement recovered another search at 1:45 AM the same day for “Does bleach and alcohol make chloroform,” according to the report.
There is a reward of up to $10,000 for information which will lead authorities to the location of Cavett.