DNA from a burned body dumped on the side of a road has been identified as missing Detroit woman Kayla Nicole Swanigan. The match was made over a year after her disappearance.
FOX 2 Detroit reports Swanigan was last seen on October 9, 2018 when her boyfriend allegedly forced her into a vehicle on Detroit’s west side. For the past year, Swanigan’s family held onto hope that the mother of two would be found alive and safe, but faced their worst nightmare when Swanigan’s daughter’s DNA matched the scorched body.
“You had to burn her body too so now she can’t even have an open casket. Now her kids can’t even say goodbye,” said Sabrina Swanigan, Kayla’s aunt.
Shortly after the 24-year-old’s disappearance, Detroit authorities recovered an unrecognizable body that was burned beyond recognition. The body was dumped off of Homer street, not far from where the mother of two was last seen.
Sabrina believes her niece’s estranged boyfriend is responsible for her murder.
“The last time I saw Kayla she had a black eye," described Sabrina to FOX 2 last October. "She (was) saying, ‘It's okay auntie,’ but he's shoving her into a car. It's not okay, love, if somebody is pushing you in a car.”
Sabrina also claimed Kayla’s relationship with her boyfriend, whose identity has not been revealed, was toxic and full of altercations. One fight lead to Kayla shooting him in the summer of 2018. Although the pair would break up often, they would reconcile after short periods of time.
“I’m fearing that he has killed her,” Sabrina said to FOX 2. “She shot him. What would you do if someone shot you and came back to you?”
Kayla’s daughter is now five years old and her son is two. It’s unclear whether her two children are fathered by her abusive boyfriend.
“I’m saying the person that did this to her you need to turn yourself in because that was foul, God going to get you for that,” promised Sabrina.
Police did not name a suspect in Kayla’s murder.
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