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Sketch released after toddler's dismembered remains found

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Police Department has released a sketch of a toddler whose dismembered remains were found in a park lagoon.

The drawing was distributed Thursday. Detectives are hoping it will help someone recognize the child.

The child's remains were discovered over the weekend in the Garfield Park lagoon after someone reported seeing a foot floating in the water. CBS Chicago reported the remains included feet, hands, and a head. A sketch artist examined the head to create the drawing, police said Wednesday.

With help from the medical examiner, police have so far only been able to offer a vague description, saying the child appears to have been African-American and roughly 2 to 4 years of age.

"If you are aware of a small child ... that you have not seen in your neighborhood in the last couple of weeks and you find that unusual or suspicious to call us," John Escalante, the department's chief of detectives, said in a plea for help from the public. "If you are aware of, for example, of a family that has a small child that suddenly packed up and moved ... and you think that's unusual or suspicious, please call us."

Authorities also spoke directly to the killer or killers.

"Do the right thing, turn yourself in," department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. "We are going to find you."

Police said they think the remains were dumped in the lagoon within the last week or two, though they have not said when they believe the child was killed. They also said they have not determined a cause of death, but Guglielmi said that tests revealed the body was dismembered after the child died.

The child most likely had short, curly black hair, brown eyes and earlobes suggesting the child might be a boy, but it can't be ruled out that the child was a girl, reported CBS Chicago.

Police also found a 20-pound weight and several plastic bags near the remains, but police have not said whether the bags had been used to dump the child's body parts, reports the station.

Detectives have been combing through missing persons reports both in and out of Chicago and officers and volunteers have been going door-to-door near the park asking for help. DNA tests were being conducted, police said, and fingerprints would be collected as part of the effort to identify the child.

Divers and others have searched the lagoon, and authorities started draining it Wednesday in the hopes of finding the rest of the toddler's body and possibly other evidence.

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