"We don't know what happened", he said, according to WCTI. Onslow County Sheriff Hans Miller hasn't said how he believes the child went missing, but said investigators aren't ruling out any possibilities, including that she was abducted or wandered off.
Maria's mother, Kristy Woods, said her daughter is a "very sweet girl" who has trouble walking. She has been missing from her home since November 26, 2017.
"Just to be able to touch her and hold her and not let her go again", the mother told reporters through tears, "I'd give anything".
Authorities are still searching for the missing 3-year-old girl from Onslow County, North Carolina that prompted an Amber Alert on Monday. She is a white female about 2-feet-9-inches tall, weighing 30 pounds.
On Monday, police searched the woods surrounding the couple's home in a mobile home park.
The search is being conducted both by ground and by air with drones and helicopters.
"Our goal is to bring Mariah back", Sheriff Miller said.
The media outlet is reporting Melissa Hunter, Mariah's grandmother, says Mariah's mother put the girl to bed at their home and she checked on her about 9 or 10 p.m. Hunter says the mother went to check on Mariah Monday morning, but she was gone. "This is my everything, besides my boys, the love that I have for this girl".
"(I'm) trying not to give up hope", Alex Woods said. Dive teams have been searching Southwest Creek in Onslow County, Meador said, which is about 3 miles away from where the family lives. He said he custody of the children for around a month previous year after an incident that alerted Child Protective Services, but when Hunter got the kids back, she reportedly wasn't cooperative in allowing Woods visitation.
The girl's two older brothers were in the house when Maria disappeared.
In addition to many state and local resources, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has brought in the Child Abduction Rapid Deployment (CARD) team. Deputies are asking anyone with information on the girl's whereabouts or who has had contact with the girl's family since Sunday to call them at (910) 989-4070. "Call somebody, tell you found her. Return my baby girl, you know, please", Alex Woods pleaded.
Anyone with information about the abduction is asked to call the Onslow County Sheriff at 910-455-3113, the FBI's Charlotte field office at 704-672-6100 or call 911.