DETROIT (WWJ) – Detroit police have confirmed that an arrest has been made in the horrific murder of 47-year-old Evelyn Gunter — the Detroit mother who went missing just over a year ago.
Gunter went missing on March 10, 2013. She was last seen around 6 p.m. by her grandson. Relatives say Gunter had just come home from running errands and was dressed to go out. She left the house and never returned.
Two days after Gunter disappeared, charred remains wrapped in barbed wire were found in a garage on the city’s west side — but no one knew it was the missing mother.
Detective-Trooper Sarah Krebs with the Michigan State Police told WWJ’s Vickie Thomas it was impossible to identify the remains.
“It was a hard case to identify because it appeared that somebody had gone to great lengths to get her to be unidentifiable,” she said.
When Gunter didn’t show up for work, her family knew something bad had happened. Her daughter told investigators that she received a text message from Gunter’s phone, saying she was going out-of-town to visit a friend.
But relatives said the text message was suspicious. Days before her disappearance, Gunter welcomed a new grandchild, and relatives said she would never just take off like that. Family members said they couldn’t help but wonder if Gunter might have been targeted because she had access to a large amount of cash, after receiving a 401K deposit and paycheck from General Motors.
Shortly after Gunter’s disappearance, her new Chevy Impala was found parked outside of Club Celebrity on Detroit’s west side. The man driving the vehicle, a convicted felon who served years in prison for rape and attempted murder, told police that Gunter loaned the car to him while she was out-of-town. Police impounded the vehicle.
Gunter’s remains stayed at the morgue until her family provided a DNA sample that helped identify Gunter six months later.
Police say the suspect is a convicted felon who served time for rape and attempted murder.
He’s expected to be arraigned in the next few days.