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New Mom in Virginia Found Murdered After Family Received Troubling Text Insisting She Needed ‘Me Time’

Missing Virginia Mother's Body Found, Husband Arrested: Police
Source: Lynchburg Police Department

The body of a missing Virginia woman was found and her husband has been arrested in connection.

Sep. 2 2023, Published 2:04 p.m. ET

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Following the disappearance of a Virginia woman and an unsettling text message that raised concerns about her safety, law enforcement located the missing young mother's body and have arrested her husband on suspicion of murder, according to authorities.

Avriel Hooks, 20, was last seen at her home in Lynchburg around 8 p.m. on Aug. 22, police said.

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A search was launched and, on Aug. 29, Hooks’ body was found in a wooded area off US 60 Lexington Turnpike in Amherst, police said.

Hooks’ mother, Ashley Pittman, spoke with detectives and said she received a text message from her daughter around 6 a.m. six days earlier, on Aug. 23, but she didn’t think her daughter sent it, Daily Mail reported.

Officials said in the text, Hooks purportedly wrote she wanted some “me time” and was at a friend’s house. The message rang alarm bells for Hooks' family, who said it was not her way of writing or speaking.

Hooks, family noted, had a five-month-old son and they said she would never willingly leave him alone.

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Pittman went to check on her daughter after receiving the text and found the door unlocked and the lights on inside the home. Hooks was nowhere to be seen, authorities said.

Multiple law enforcement agencies then launched the search to find her.

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After locating Hooks' remains, the Lynchburg Police Department announced the arrest of Michael L. Perry III, Hooks' 21-year-old husband, in connection with her murder.

Perry was booked into the Blue Ridge Regional Jail and charged with second-degree murder as well as unlawful disposal of a dead body, officials said.

He is being held without bond.


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