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Authorities say autopsy confirms identity of missing woman

July 18, 2019

MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina sheriff’s office says an autopsy has confirmed that a body found this week is that of a woman reported missing last August.

The Carteret County Sheriff’s Office says on its Facebook page that the autopsy performed on Wednesday showed that Kristen Ashley Bennett died of a gunshot wound to the head. A small caliber bullet was found during the autopsy.

The woman’s body was found on the Branche family property. The sheriff’s office says the body was wrapped in a tarpaulin, and items found on her body were consistent with those described by her family. Her identity was also confirmed through dental records.

Her death is being investigated as a homicide. Bennett’s boyfriend, Trey Branche, was arrested last year and charged in connection with her death.

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