Heartbreak as body found in woods revealed to be missing woman, 20, who was abducted from store in brutal heist in which cashier was killed
- Brenna Kathleen Marcus, 20, had been missing since Monday night
- She was kidnapped after her co-worker, 20-year-old Joseph Orlando, was shot dead at the Family Dollar store in Michigan
- Detectives found her car outside the store but no trace of her
- They have released CCTV footage of a man suspected of abducting her
By Daily Mail Reporter PUBLISHED: 19 July 2013
The body of 20-year-old Brenna Machus, who was kidnapped following a deadly heist at the dollar store where she worked on Monday, has been found in a wooded area less than two miles away.
The assistant manager had not been seen since an unidentified man wearing a hoodie entered Family Dollar in Dearborn on Monday night and shot cashier Joseph Orlando, 20, dead.
The identity of the body was confirmed as Machus hours after it was found on Thursday, said Nancy Hamood Strutz, assistant to Dearborn Police Chief Ron Haddad.
‘I feel rather enraged that we have another homicide in Dearborn at this time,’ Haddad said.
Abducted: Machus had been missing since she was abducted from the store where she worked on Monday
Machus vanished after the apparent robbery. Her car was found parked outside the store and her belongings and cell phone were found inside.
Her father, Jamie Machus, suggested that his daughter could have known the attacker as she had been receiving threatening messages, he said.
‘They don’t think robbery was a motive,’ he told My Fox Detroit. ‘There was some type of an altercation out behind her store. She went out back to find out what was going on, and they believe that’s when she was abducted.’
He added: ‘One guy in particular kept making threatening Facebook messages to her. This kid used to come in and harass her at the store, and she’d have to ask him to leave or whatever because he was stoned.
But he said he had looked at the surveillance footage and did not recognize the man caught on camera.
The tragic discovery comes a day after Machus’s mother addressed a bank of TV cameras to appeal to her daughter’s abductor.
‘If there’s someone out there who has her, we don’t care if you drop her off at a hospital. Let us know,’ Lisa Machus said. ‘We will come get her, no questions asked. We want her home.’
Family members of Orlando and Machus, who had been working together at the store Monday night, stood behind Dearborn police and Broad at the news conference. Some held each other, weeping.
Orlando had worked at the store for less than a week. His grandfather, Alan Konkel, was overcome with emotion behind the microphone at police headquarters Wednesday.
‘He was a typical kid and now he was a young man. He was just ecstatic and happy about the job, and he was smiling all the time,” he said. His death “was just senseless.’
Machus had worked at several Family Dollar locations, said Rick Smith, regional vice president at Family Dollar.
Dearborn Police Chief Ronald Haddad said: ‘Our investigation in ongoing and all of our resources are currently being utilized to locate Ms Machus and identify and apprehend the perpetrator of this vicious crime.’
Mr Orlando’s body was found on Tuesday morning after staff arrived at the store to open for the day and found the shop in disarray.
The suspects targeted the store’s safe and cash drawer.
No trace: Police found her car outside the store and her personal belongings and cell phone left behind
Surveilance cameras caught the suspect dressed in a dark hooded jacket, blue jeans and white shoes, as he entered the store at around 7.30pm on Monday.
Despite summer temperatures, he is wearing a jacket with a hooded sweatshirt over his head and drawn to cover the majority of his face.
The suspect waves his hand at someone as he enters the store and is seen grabbing a cart.
‘Our investigation is ongoing and all of our resources are currently being utilized to locate Ms. Machus and identify and apprehend the perpetrator of this vicious crime,’ Haddad said.
Investigators wanted to speak with two women who were customers in the store before the incident. Police said the women were in the store between about 7:25 p.m. and 7:35 p.m.
One of the women – who is not a suspect – has been speaking with police and now they are appealing for the other – also not a suspect – to step forward to help with the investigation.
Ashley Sulla, 18, said she has been in a relationship with Brenna Machus since April and that they lived together at a home in Romulus.
Sulla said she last spoke to Machus, whom she said she has known since childhood, before 7 p.m. Monday. When Sulla came home about 1 a.m. and saw Machus wasn’t there, she said she assumed Machus had gone to her mother’s house.
Tina Cable drove to the police staging area when she heard that a body had been found. Her son was Machus’ friend.
‘I want them to catch who did this,’ Cable said.
The Family Dollar is in a busy retail area on the west side of Dearborn, with a hardware store and restaurants nearby.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2369039/Breanna-Machus-Body-just-miles-missing-woman-20-abducted-deadly-dollar-store-heist.html#ixzz2ZU86UKT5
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