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Woman’s 70-year-old boyfriend arrested after her body is found in trunk of car set on fire, California police say

Police in California have arrested the boyfriend of a 70-year-old woman weeks after her body was found in the trunk of a car that had been set on fire.

This was announced by the Tulare Police Department. received a call 2 a.m. for a Feb. 15 motor vehicle accident in Tulare. Officers responded to the scene on Bardsley Avenue and found no signs of a collision, although the vehicle was on fire.

Firefighters extinguished the fire and opened the trunk.

“When they searched the vehicle,” said Sgt. Rosa Moreno, “They were able to find an unidentified person in the trunk of the car.”

The body was later determined to be that of Patrice Armstrong, 58, of Los Angeles.when the police provided A search warrant was served on her home and they determined it was a crime scene.

During the investigation, police learned that Armstrong was romantically involved with Rodney O’Keith, also from Los Angeles. Tulare police located the man in Visalia on Wednesday. They took him into custody and transported him to Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Police Department believe He claimed he killed Ms. Armstrong in South Los Angeles, drove her car to Tulare, put her body in the trunk and set it on fire.

O’Keith’s bail was set at $3 million.

Police initially arrested another suspect in her murder, 44-year-old Branden Baylin Howard. He had been charged with murder because she was the owner of the car where she was found. Investigators later said that although Howard was responsible for the arson, they did not believe he was responsible for Armstrong’s murder.

The official cause of the woman’s death will be determined by an autopsy report.

Moreno said violence is rare in Tulare.

“We take these incidents very seriously and will do everything we can to ensure public safety,” she said. “Our top priority is to ensure the safety of the citizens of the City of Tulare.”

A man claiming to be the victim’s son opens a GoFundMe account ask For donations to help her family. Of her $7,000 goal, she only raised $2,000.

Tulare is a city of approximately 69,000 people located in central California between Fresno and Bakersfield.

The arrests are as follows:

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