Investigators confirm remains found are those of Savannah Spurlock

Investigators confirm remains found are those of Savannah Spurlock
Kentucky State Police officials on Thursday announced that the discovery of human remains found late Wednesday night are those of Savannah Spurlock. (WXIX) (Source: WXIX)

(WAVE) - Kentucky State Police officials on Thursday announced that the discovery of human remains found late Wednesday night are those of Savannah Spurlock.

Spurlock, a 23-year-old mother of four, was last seen leaving a Lexington-area bar with several men late one night in January.

David Sparks, 23, has been arrested in connection to the case. He was booked into the Madison County Detention Center early Thursday morning, charged with abuse of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence. KSP Trooper Robert Purdy said at a news conference Thursday afternoon that it was too early to tell which other charges, if any, Sparks might face.

“We’re gonna allow our detectives to continue their investigation to try to determine exactly what happened,” he said.

How Spurlock died remains a question that Purdy was not able to answer.

PREVIOUS | Savannah Spurlock: Months after disappearance, family desperate for help

“The location and manner of how the body was recovered gives us a lot of suspicion about what may have happened,” he said.

On Wednesday, human remains were found at a property in Garrard County, owned by the family of one of the suspects. It’s not clear if that property is connected to the Sparks family.

“There’s a lot of things we’re going to continue to look at in the coming days and weeks ... (including) when the body may have been placed there.”

Medical examiners in Frankfort performed the autopsy Thursday. Richmond police have been the lead investigating agency in the case. Garrard County authorities and the FBI also are investigating. Police departments from Richmond and Lancaster also have assisted.

In April, Spurlock’s family announced a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of anyone involved in her disappearance.

Spurlock’s family hired private investigator Salvatore Grasso less than two weeks ago to help with the case.

“We were working down there day and night practically around the clock,” Grasso told WAVE 3 News’ sister station WKYT. “I said from day one that somebody that lived in that house where she was last seen had to know what happened to Savannah Spurlock. Bottom line.”

Following Thursday’s KSP news conference, Spurlock’s aunt, Lisa Thoma, released a video statement on behalf of the family.

“As KSP now takes the reigns, we pray that justice will be served by anyone involved,” she said. “Savannah, we love you so much. Rest in heaven.”

Watch the full statement below:

Family Statement

We are heartbroken to confirm that Savannah’s remains were found on the property of a home in Garrard County overnight. Our sobs of pain and physical anguish are met with moments of our beautiful memories of the vibrant and vivacious person she was. She lives on through her precious boys, who each carry a special part of her in them. We know that Savannah has not been suffering all of this time. She has been cradled in the arms of our Great Savior, Jesus Christ. As we have cried out to Him through the unknown, we continue to cling to Him through the pain and heartache of the truth to come. As hard as the last six months have been, the truth of what happened that night in January is going to be even more painful. We have fought a very public fight, and now we must step away and grieve privately. We plan to close this page tomorrow morning, and we ask that media respect our need for privacy as well. We could not have done this without the over 35,000 of you on this page who have followed, shared, prayed, searched, donated, and advocated. You have kept Savannah’s silenced voice alive alongside us in a fight for the truth. You have embraced a stranger with empathy and compassion. Many of you have adopted her into your family as one of your own. Thank you. Thank you to the ones who provided the tip that gave us closure. That took immense courage and bravery to stand up for the truth. Thank you. To Detective Fraze and Detective Scott from Richmond PD, you have put so much heart and soul into fighting for Savannah. We are forever grateful for your passion for answers, your perseverance to protect the case, and your dedication and hours of work. Thank you to Richmond PD, Garrard County PD, KSP, FBI, and all the other local LE agencies who have poured into this case. Thank you to Sal Grasso, for helping with this final push for answers. As KSP now takes the reins, we pray that justice will be served by anyone involved. Thank you to the professional groups who have advised us, cried with us, and searched for Savannah. Cajun Search and Rescue Team, Midwest Chapter of Texas Eqqusearch, LostNMissing, The Aware Foundation, Missing Person Cases Network, and the many other teams that aided on the ground and online. Thank you to Kim Gipson, Grace Prater, Toni Robinson, and all of our other local searchers who spent hours on the ground fighting for Savannah. Thank you to the local and national media outlets who have spread awareness week after week. We appreciate your efforts so deeply. The amount of support and love you all have shown our family is incredible. Around the world, you have been #SavannahStrong. God has an amazing way of knitting people together through tragedy. We are thankful for those new bonds formed. For the small number who have had ill intentions through this process, we pray that God will meet you and forgive you for hurting Savannah and our family. As this part of the process closes for us, we continue to pray and advocate for the other families of the missing who are still waiting. We pray for perseverance through the unknown. We pray for courage to fight for their loved one, who is worthy to be found. Savannah, we love you so much. #RestinHeaven #SavannahStrong

Posted by Missing Savannah on Thursday, July 11, 2019

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