Arrest Made In Kidnapping, Homicide Of Mackenzie Lueck

Jun 28, 2019, 12:06 PM | Updated: 5:43 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A 31-year-old man who had been identified as a person of interest has been charged in the death of Mackenzie Lueck, after police confirmed DNA evidence was found at his home.

Chief Mike Brown with the Salt Lake City Police Department said the case has turned into a homicide investigation.

Salt Lake resident Ayoola Ajayi, age 31, has been charged with aggravated murder, aggravated kidnapping, desecration of a body and obstruction of justice.

Ajayi has been booked into the Salt Lake County Metro Jail.

A possible motive was not discussed at a media briefing held Friday.

Investigators said they were able to identify Ajayi as the individual who met Lueck at Hatch Park on Monday, June 17 at 3 a.m. She had been dropped off at the location by a Lyft driver who picked her up at the Salt Lake International Airport.

Chief Brown said Ajayi’s call phone pinged at the same location just a minute apart from Lueck’s phone. It was at the same time and location where police said Lueck’s cell phone stopped sending data or location services.

After questioning, officials said the suspect admitted to having text conversations with Lueck, but said his last conversation was before she flew back from California, where she had gone for the funeral of her grandmother.

Chief Brown said Ajayi denied any personal contact, and told investigators he didn’t know what Lueck looked like, despite police finding having several photos of her in his possession.

Neighbors of told police they witnessed a large fire in Ajayi’s backyard on June 17 and 18.

While executing a search warrant at the suspect’s 547 North 1000 West home, detectives found what Chief Brown described as a “fresh dig” in the same spot where the fire was reported.

After digging at the spot, police found several charred items consistent with Lueck’s personal items. They also found other items determined to be female human tissue.

Forensic analysis determined the human tissue was a likely match to Lueck’s DNA.

Chief Brown said the investigation was still ongoing. They wanted to know if the suspect acted alone, or if any other individuals were involved.

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Arrest Made In Kidnapping, Homicide Of Mackenzie Lueck