The grim discovery comes nearly two months after Koenig’s presumed abduction from Common Grounds Espresso in Anchorage, where the barista was last seen alive during CCTV footage of a robbery being abducted from the shop by an armed man. At the time, Koenig’s father James (who had raised Samantha since she was “small”) made a heart-wrenching plea to the kidnappers to release his daughter safely, acknowledging that time was working against the family in bringing Samantha Koenig home alive:
“I just need her home… Every day she’s gone, the odds are against us. I will give you anything in this world. I will meet you, I will give you whatever you want. Just please bring my daughter back.”
The body located during a law enforcement dive in Matanuska Lake, off the Glenn Highway in Anchorage, has not been confirmed as that of Samantha Koenig, and an autopsy is pending. But even if the remains were not that of the missing teen, Anchorage Police Chief Mark Mew says that police do not believe that Samantha is still alive. Reading from a written statement Monday, Mew explained to gathered reporters:
“Investigators believe that Samantha died within hours of the abduction, and we are continuing to investigate these facts.”
Law enforcement officials said Monday that they expected to file abduction and murder charges in the disappearance and death of Samantha Koenig, and last month indicated that Israel Keyes, a 34-year-old carpenter in custody on fraud charges, was directly tied to her disappearance.