Police: Man killed girlfriend, dumped body in Lake County

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DELAND, Fla. - Authorities said a DeLand man was arrested after the body of his girlfriend was found in rural Lake County.

Family members confirmed to WFTV on Sunday that the victim is 19-year-old Alyssa Oakes.

The alleged crime unfolded when a resident in the Hunters Creek apartment complex in DeLand called 911 to report a man stealing his car early Friday morning. Police said they were able to identify 20-year-old Khambrel Hadley as the suspected car thief. The man whose car was stolen didn't want to be identified, but told WFTV he spotted Hadley driving his vehicle.

"He was pulling out of the apartment complex when I saw him take off," he said.

According to police, just before noon Friday, Hadley's mother called 911 to report that her son admitted to killing Oakes a few days ago and dumping her body in a wooded area in Sorrento.

Police said they did a well-being check at Oakes' apartment, which is also in the Hunters Creek apartment complex. Detectives searched the unlocked and unoccupied apartment, leading them to discover evidence linked to the murder, authorities said.

After further investigation, police said they found Oakes' body.

Neighbors said there have been domestic violence incidents for the couple in the past.

"Her parents would come out here from time to time when they got in arguments," one neighbor said.

A spokesperson for the apartment complex where the victim lived said police responded to her apartment three weeks ago for a domestic dispute.

Hadley was booked into the Orange County Jail around 5:30 p.m. Hadley is being held on second-degree murder and grand theft auto charges out of Volusia County.