Investigation Still Incomplete After Arrest In Saunders Case - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

Investigation Still Incomplete After Arrest In Saunders Case

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Luis E. Ruiz Luis E. Ruiz
OKLAHOMA CITY -

Nine months after police discovered one of the most gruesome scenes the state has ever seen, a man was arrested for the murder of Carina Saunders Thursday.

Saunders was found dismembered in a duffel bag behind a Bethany grocery store in October 2011.

Hundreds of hours of police work, piles of search warrants and dozens of news reports later, police are confident they have at least one of the people responsible for the teen's death. It is a crucial piece of the puzzle to an investigation that is still incomplete.

Just after 1 p.m. Thursday, Bethany police arrested Luis Ruiz on an arrest warrant for murder in the first degree. Before Ruiz's arrest, police and court papers indicate that the only people behind bars with any connection to the case were four men who are being held on drug charges.

7/5/2012 Related Story: Suspect Arrested For Carina Saunders' Murder

Investigators and prosecutors are still grappling over whether they have enough evidence to bring forward additional murder charges against them.

A defense attorney for one of the drug trafficking suspects told News 9 that prosecutors planned on filing additional murder charges by the end of June. Those charges have yet to be filed.

"My guess is [the prosecution] is going to be seeking the highest punishment that [murder] carries, so [the District Attorney's Office is] going to be careful about that," criminal defense attorney Tony Coleman said on June 15.

"A heinous crime like this … there's no words. I think [Carina's killers] deserve the same punishment," Carina's father, Richard Saunders, said months ago.

6/20/2012 Related Story: Investigators Follow New Lead In Saunders Murder Case

Two months after the murder, a witness told police she was kidnapped and forced to watch the torture of Carina Saunders. The witness tells police all of it was a way to intimidate the witness and other women into cooperating with a group's drug and human trafficking ring.

Police were not releasing any other information on Ruiz's arrest as of late Thursday. Investigators plan to present formal charges to the district attorney's office next week.

8/13/2011 Related Story: Body Found In Duffel Bag In Bethany Field

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