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Man arrested for murder in case of burned missing woman

Posted at 1:32 PM, Jun 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-18 21:18:45-04

MARSHALL, Mich. — A man has been arrested for murder in the case of a missing woman whose body was found burned this spring.

On March 7, the body of Allison Sargent, 25, of Pennfield Tonwship was found by police officers in a remote location in Emmett Township, on East River Road near Raymond Road.

Today, an arrest warrant was issued in the case for Jose Juarez, 25, of Bedford Township for open murder, mutilation of a body or a corpse and felony firearm possession, according to Calhoun County Sheriff Steven Hinkley this afternoon at a news conference on the case.

Juarez has been in custody on a parole hold at Calhoun County Jail since March 8. He is expected to be arraigned today at the Calhoun County Justice Complex in Battle Creek.

On March 5, Sargent was reported missing from her home in the 9000 block of Huntington Road by her fiancé. She was last driving a 2012 black Dodge Journey.

Deputies couldn't locate her after searching for several hours, including tracking her cell phone.

She was located after a passerby notified police of a body in Emmett Township, which was determined to be Sargent.

After an investigation, detectives believe Sargent was shot and killed at a residence in Bedford Township, and her body was transported to Emmett Township and burned.

Responding to a tip, detectives obtained video footage of Sargent and a male leaving a Meijer on Columbia Avenue in Battle Creek on March 5, just after 12:30 a.m.

Her vehicle was also later discovered unoccupied in downtown Detroit near an Amtrak train station. The interior of the vehicle was burned.

Sheriff Hinkley said multiple law enforcement agencies worked together on the case, spending "hundreds of hours" on it and issuing over 40 search warrants.

The Calhoun County Sheriff's Office was assisted by officials from various local, state and federal agencies: Emmett Township; Battle Creek; tribal law enforcement; Michigan State Police; Amtrak police; the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Hinkley added that they are still following up on leads and encourage anyone with information on the case to contact the Calhoun County Sheriff's Office at 269-969-6450 or Silent Observer at 269-964-3888.