LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A 24-year-old woman was sought Thursday as a person of interest in the “suspicious” death of her grandmother in Bell and whose own four young children are also missing.

Sarah Montoya is being sought in connection with the death of 64-year-old Paula Montoya, whose body was discovered July 21 in her home in the 6600 block of Pine Avenue.

(credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department)

(credit: Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department)

Sheriff’s investigators said Paula Montoya was last seen alive three days earlier at her home. She was described as an active member in her church, a “doting grandmother of six children and an attentive great-grandmother to four children.”

Detectives did not release the cause of her death. Her body was wrapped in a blanket and discovered by police responding to a request for a welfare check.

“We believe that Paula’s granddaughter, Sarah Montoya … and her four children, ranging in age from 1 to 9, were the last ones to see Paula alive,” sheriff’s Lt. Mike Rosson said at a news conference Tuesday. “The body was discovered in a way that was suspicious in nature. I can’t describe specifics on the case at this time.”

Julia Isham also took part in the news conference, speaking directly to her daughter.

“Sarah, I love you honey so much, and I pray that God keeps you and the babies in his hands,” she said. “Call me or one of your (aunts) please and we’ll go pick you up wherever you are.”

Sarah’s car apparently was found near the U.S./Mexico border, and detectives said she might have crossed into Mexico with her children. She was described as 4 feet 11, 130 pounds, with long brown hair. Her children are named Elijah, Yosu, Joshua and Abagail.

Anyone with information about the case was urged to call the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau at (323) 980-5500.

(©2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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