DELAND, Fla. - For officers of the DeLand Police Department, what began as a stolen car report led the discovery of a suspected homicide scene, and a body that was dumped in Lake County.
Police said on Friday, at 5:21 a.m., an officer from the DeLand Police department was called to the Hunters Creek Apartments where a stolen car report was taken minutes after the vehicle's owner saw his car, and the suspected thief, 20-year-old Khambrel Hadley, driving away.
At 11:50 a.m. the same day, DeLand officers were again dispatched to the Hunters Creek Apartments after a well being check was requested by the Orlando Police Department.
Orlando police received reports from Khambrel Hadley's mother, who said that Khambrel admitted killing his girlfriend two days ago and dumping her body in an unknown wooded area.
Police said detectives went to the unlocked apartment and entered after announcing themselves.
The apartment was unoccupied and a warrant was obtained to search inside, police said.
Police said their detectives discovered pieces of evidence that corroborated the information provided to Orlando police.
Police were then led to a body that was discovered in a wooded area in Lake County.
Although the identity of the body is not determined at this time, it is believed to be the girlfriend of Khambrel Hadley, police said.
Investigators continue to work both crime scenes to verify the information received and to also associate evidence with the alleged homicide, police said.
The investigation remains active and ongoing, police said.
Mariah Canata lives in the same building, and said she just saw Hadley and his girlfriend a few days ago, carrying groceries up the stairs.
Canata said the couple fought constantly.
"I don't know, I feel bad, because we saw them fighting and we saw her like crying a couple times, so I kinda feel bad," Canata said.
Police said Hadley was found in Orlando and arrested by Orlando Police officers where he was booked into the Orange County Jail.
Police said they have charged Hadley with car theft and homicide and was expected to go in front of a judge Saturday morning.
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