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Body of missing New Mexico man found in Arizona

Coconino County Arizona

Sedona AZ –  The body of a missing New Mexico man, Craig Cavanaugh, 44, of Farmington, was identified in Coconino County, Arizona.

Cavanaugh was reported missing to the Farmington Police Department on July 5, 2019. He was last seen in Farmington on July 4, reportedly headed to Peoria, Arizona for a job, but he never arrived. Cavanaugh’s phone was last pinged in Payson, Arizona on July fourth.

Cavanaugh’s credit cards were used by three males in the Arizona towns of Payson, Glendale, and Peoria between July 5 and July 7, 2019 and Cavanaugh’s missing 2012 Toyota Tacoma truck was later recovered in New Mexico on July 12, 2019.

Farmington New Mexico police detectives received a tip that Cavanaugh may be found in the Woods Canyon Lake area, just outside Forest Lakes, Arizona, and notified Coconino County Sheriff’s Office. Coconino County deputies and the Search and Rescue unit conducted a limited search of the area based off this vague information, but found nothing.

Coconino County Sheriff’s detectives joined the investigation with Farmington Police detectives, as well as several Phoenix area law enforcement agencies, and the Gila County Sheriff’s Office. The males using the credit cards were identified by Farmington detectives working with the Arizona law enforcement agencies. The investigation determined these males are not considered suspects in Cavanaugh’s disappearance.

CCSO detectives were able to identify two possible suspects believed to be with Cavanaugh in Payson on July fourth. Detectives located and interviewed one of the suspects, who provided some information that led both Coconino and Navajo County Sheriff’s detectives to a wooded area just off Highway 260 outside Heber, Arizona, and to the body of a deceased male on August 5, 2019. Identification of the deceased could not be readily made. Cavanaugh’s body was identified later by his fingerprints.

Coconino County and Navajo County Sheriff’s Office are continuing the investigation of this case. CCSO will be the contact agency for any further tips or information regarding this case at 928-774-4523. No further details are being released at this time.


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