Bodies Of Phoenix-Area Couple Found, Suspect Arrested After Police Dig In Maricopa Backyard

The search for a married couple from the Phoenix area missing since last week has ended tragically. Their bodies were discovered at a home in the neighborhood, the homeowner arrested in connection with their death.

That suspect’s name is Jose Valenzuela, Tuscon News Now reported. Police haven’t provided any details about the man or his relationship to the Careccias.

On Wednesday, the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office served a warrant at the property, at which time a “person of interest” was taken into custody. That night, officers started digging in the backyard.

In an official statement, the sheriff’s office said their investigation “led to the recovery of two bodies, a man and a woman, that we believe to be Mike and Tina Carrecia… Family members … have just been notified of the recovery and arrest,” according to the Arizona Republic.

Investigators are still combing the scene where they were found for evidence, KOVA added. So far, evidence has suggested that their disappearance was the result of foul play, but police have provided no further details, the Associated Press reported.


The discovery of the couple’s bodies thus ends a hunt that enlisted door -to-door and ground and air searches across the Phoenix-area beginning on June 22.

The pair left their house, by car, about 5 a.m. By 7:15 p.m., his teenaged son called 911, saying “I’m worried about him… their phones are off.”

Family have told authorities that the two said they had an appointment in the East Valley the next day; she apparently had an errand to run for her boss at Chandler Construction where she worked as an accountant. However, she left her purse at home and the item she was supposed to deliver remained inside.

Both were expected at Chandler Construction, but they never showed up. But their car did, later that week, only a half-mile away from their house, and the Phoenix-area couple was nowhere to be found. Michael’s brother-in-law, Geoff Dugan, insisted they were seen the night before.

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