The investigation into the disappearance of a Marine wife from San Diego’s North County took a dramatic turn Tuesday with the discovery of a woman’s body in Riverside County and the arrest of a suicidal woman in a Point Loma hotel.
Military investigators have joined San Diego County Sheriff’s Department homicide detectives as they investigate the disappearance of Brittany Killgore, 22, wife of Lance Cpl. Cory Killgore who was deployed in Afghanistan at the time.
The young woman was last seen wearing a purple evening gown in Fallbrook at 5 p.m. on April 13. Deputies said they tracked her cell phone to San Diego’s Gaslamp area.
On Tuesday, detectives were drawn to a rural area near Lake Skinner where a road worker cutting grass discovered a woman’s body about a mile north of Warren Road. The San Diego Medical Examiners Office is working to identify the body.
While the investigation continued at that scene, detectives also processed items removed from a Ramada Inn in the 1400 block of Rosecrans Street. It was there that detectives say they arrested a suspect in Brittany’s disappearance.
Jessica Lynn Lopez, 27, was found with self-inflicted wounds at the hotel according to Lt. Larry Nesbit. Lopez has been booked into Las Colinas and was scheduled to be arraigned Thursday on murder charges. Investigators have not revealed the relationship between Lopez and Brittany Killgore.
Another person, considered a “person of interest” in the case, has been held on unrelated charges. Louis Perez, 45, was also arrested on unrelated charges. Perez is believed to be one of the last people seen with her and has been arrested on unrelated charges, according to officials.
He has been questioned regarding Killgore's disappearance, but detectives said he was uncooperative.
Perez is an active duty Marine based at Camp Pendleton and is currently in San Diego Central Jail for allegedly stealing an AR-15 assault rifle. Investigators are now classifying Perez as a "person of interest."
"[He is] uncooperative and not completely forthcoming about his knowledge we believe," said Nesbit.
Killgore's father is in San Diego and has been told the latest information about the case, according to officials. Killgore's husband was expected to arrive in San Diego Tuesday night.
Neighbors and friends at Killgore’s apartment complex were shocked at news of an arrest but relieved at the same time.
“I think all of her friends are happy someone is going to be held responsible for this,” said neighbor Christopher Oglesby.”
He said Killgore moved out from Missouri at age 22 to be with her Marine husband.
The Killgores had filed for divorce on April 10, according to court documents.
“Thank you everyone for the prayers and concern," Cory Killgore posted on Facebook Tuesday. "I request you pray for her more then you do for me. I have family and friends for support. She is alone where ever she is."
Anyone with information about Killgore can contact Detective Brian Patterson at 858-974-2321 or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.
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