Quantcast
Published On: Mon, Oct 20th, 2014

Police linking dead body found to missing Virginia student, Hannah Graham

While the official word has not come from authorities, the human remains found by a sheriff’s deputy on an abandoned property in Albemarle County, Virginia is likely the missing University of Virginia student Hannah Graham.

hannah-grahamMore details and an announcement will likely happen today as Graham, 18, of Alexandria, Virginia, vanished in the early hours of Saturday Sept. 13. She was last seen by witnesses on Charlottesville’s Downtown Mall with a man identified by police as Jesse Matthew Jr., 32, of Charlottesville.

Matthew is in custody and police have notified Graham’s family, said Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo Sr. Authorities also said Graham’s case has become a death investigation.

Graham reportedly became lost after a night out drinking and socializing with friends.

Longo said a search team from the Chesterfield County Sheriff’s Office found the remains on an abandoned property in southern Albemarle County, the same region where police found the body of 20-year-old Virginia Tech student Morgan Harrington three months after she vanished in 2009.

“I want to thank everyone who gave up their days, their nights, their weekends,” Longo said of the search forGraham. “People who called, wrote and dropped food and good wishes and words of encouragement to the search groups and the detectives who work so hard through this investigation.”

“Today would have not been possible without their prayers, their encouragement and their help,” the chief said.

Longo said a police official reached out to Hannah Graham’s parents, John and Susan Graham, with “a very difficult phone call to share this preliminary discovery.”

Police said they have been searching the property for any clues, and said they would not release further details at this stage of the investigation.

“Today’s discovery is a significant development. And we have a great deal of work ahead of us. We cannot and we will not jump to any conclusions in regards to today’s discovery,” said Col. Steve Sellers, of the Albemarle County Sheriff’s Office.

“This sadly is now a death investigation,” Sellers said.

Police have said they linked Matthew’s DNA to the investigations of a violent sexual assault in Fairfax City in 2005 and the abduction and murder of Virginia Tech University student Morgan Harrington, 20, in October 2009.

Matthew has also been identified as a football player who was accused of sexual assault at Liberty University in 2002 and transferred to Christopher Newport University, where he was accused of another sexual assault in 2003 before dropping out.

The university investigations did not lead to criminal charges.

James Camblos III, the lawyer representing Matthew said he would await further information. “The police have located human remains and we will wait to see what the medical examiner says to see who it is,” Camblos said.

Get some of the top stories from Virgina on The Dispatch HERE

Interested in covering local news or events in your area, contact us at [email protected]

 

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

Subscribe to Weekly Newsletter

* indicates required
/ ( mm / dd ) [ALL INFO CONFIDENTIAL]

About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at [email protected] ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

Tags

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Sign up for our Weekly Newsletter



Categories

Archives

At the Movies

Pin It