Lisa Monahan, News 9, and Xin Xin Liu, News9.com
BETHANY, Oklahoma -- During a press conference on Monday, Bethany police released the identity of the body found in a duffel bag in Bethany on Thursday, October 13.
According to Phil Cole, Chief of Police at the Bethany Police Department, the body has been identified as 19-year-old Carina Saunders. Police said tattoos helped investigators identify the teenager before the Medical Examiner's official report.
According to police, an animal rescue group found the duffel bag in a wooded area behind the Homeland near N.W. 23rd Street and N. Rockwell Avenue and called 911. Police believe the body had been there for three or four days before it was found.
Police said Saunders' family last reported seeing her on September 28. The family filed a missing person's report at the Oklahoma City Police Department, and started a Facebook page called Carina Come Home.
According to the page, someone last spotted Saunders at an apartment complex near Northwest 41st and MacArthur Blvd. on October 8 and 9.
"She had friends in that complex. It was not unusual for her to be on that property," Chief Cole said.
Police said investigators were able to gather leads from the first day of the investigation, because tattoos match those shown on Saunders' body in a picture from Facebook.
"When we had a tentative idea that this may be who it was, we started to work immediately," Chief Cole said.
Police said they have several leads but no motivation for the killing. If you have any information in the case, call Bethany police at (405)-789-2323.
The Oklahoma State Bureau Of Investigation is working with Bethany police to try and develop a suspect in the case.
Saunders' family released the following statement on a Facebook page:
Carina's father and I need to inform all of you that Carina has gone home to be with her Lord and Savior. We wanted to let everyone close to her know before you found out on the news. Thank you so much for all your prayers, and love and support. Please keep them coming as our family is going through this time of trial.