A body that investigators located in a remote area of the Azusa Canyon in West Covina, Calfornia on Saturday has now been identified as that of a 27-year-old professional dancer who has been missing since Monday. The police have also announced that they have made an arrest in connection to the disappearance and death of the man.
The West Covina police released a statement on Sunday identifying the body of the professional dancer, who went by the stage name of “Rocky” and whose real name was Rahkeem Reyes. According to the West Covina Police Department, the body was actually found about 10:30 a.m. on Saturday along Azusa Avenue nearly two and a half miles up inside the Azusa Canyon by deputies from the Los Angeles County sheriff’s office and members of the San Dimas Search and Rescue team.
It has been almost a week since the dancer was allegedly last seen at approximately 5:40 p.m. on Monday. An unoccupied but still running vehicle belonging to Reyes was found later that day in the 1500 block of McWood Street, and his wallet and laptop were still untouched inside the car.
During the investigation into the man reported missing, as revealed by Lt. David Lee of the West Covina police, said that the police actually made an arrest in connection with the disappearance of Rahkeem Reyes. Though his identity had not been revealed until Sunday, the police told the on Saturday night that they had arrested a suspect in connection to the professional dancer’s disappearance.
Twenty-year-old Phillip Von Wade, who is a native of West Covina, had been arrested on Thursday night in actuality and is currently being held in lieu of $1 million bail because of a suspicion of murder made in connection with the case. Clay Center Dispatch said that a court appearance for Von Wade will happen on Monday night when he is scheduled to stand in front of a judge in Los Angeles County Superior Court’s Pomona branch.
Officer Eddie Flores, who is a spokesman for the West Covina police, said that investigators are still attempting to obtain a possible motive as to why Phillip Von Wade would have killed Rahkeem Reyes, a man the police say Von Wade knew. The girlfriend of the professional dancer had told the media that Reyes had actually hired Wade to make a costume for him from several months ago and had never received a completed order. In fact, she said that on September 5, Reyes had gone to the home of Philip Von Wade in order to get another part of the costume fitted, but never came home afterwards. Despite this, the police still do not know the full extent of the men’s relationship to each other and will continue to investigate that particular fact.
Rahkeem Reyes’ family had created a Facebook group during their frantic search for the professional dancer, who My News LA reported had appeared in several commercials, dance videos, movies and also live stage performances. They took to it again earlier today to confirm “with great sadness” that his body had been found and thanked all the persons who assisted in the search when Reyes was thought to just be missing, as well as those who sent their prayers. The statement the family posted also requested that they have some privacy during this difficult time of grieving.
“We are deeply heart broken. God bless you and god bless our son, Rocky.”
Earlier this week, social media had been flooded by requests from friends and family to the public asking for help to look for the missing man whom they posted many pictures of.
Investigators are currently waiting on the coroner’s office to examine the body and give a cause of death and a time of death for Rahkeem Reyes. The police are also asking that anyone with information regarding the death of the professional dancer contact the West Covina police at 626-939-8500 or submit tips anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
[Image via Facebook/ West Covina Police Department]