A car missing from the Hacienda Heights home where the badly decomposed bodies of a woman and man were discovered Wednesday night has been located in El Monte, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department stated Thursday.
Deputies initially responded to a home in the 16600 block of Carriage Place at about 5:30 p.m. Wednesday to conduct a welfare check on an 84-year-old female resident who hadn't been seen in about a week, sheriff's official said in a news release.
When they arrived, deputies smelled a strong odor of decomposition coming from within the home, prompting them to force their way inside, the release stated.
Once in the residence, they found the bodies of the two victims in separate rooms. It appeared both had been assaulted, but it was not immediately known how they died.
Both were described as being in advanced stages of decomposition, investigators said. Their identities have not been confirmed, but authorities believed the female victim was the homeowner.
During the course of the investigation, detectives discovered that the woman's car was missing.
“We’re assuming and believe that vehicle was stolen, Corina said. "And so we’re putting that information out there, hopefully someone can see the car, knows the car, maybe spot it driving around.”
The 2001 Toyota Camry was located around noon on Thursday in the 12100 block of Magnolia Street in El Monte.
The vehicle was towed and stored, pending processing by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Crime Lab.
The woman lived with her adult son who was described as being in his 50s, according to Lt. John Corina of the sheriff's Homicide Bureau.
The son was in county jail on an unrelated charge and had been arrested on suspicion of elder abuse, Corina told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.
Neighbor Edgar Siliezar described the residential neighborhood as "calm" and "quiet," and called the crime "shocking."
"Everybody gets along," he said of the area. "It feels like everybody knows one another. Now I'm hearing this?"
Anyone with information about this incident was encouraged to contact the Sheriff's Department's Homicide Bureau at 323-890-5500.
Those who prefer to provide information anonymously can contact Crime Stoppers by calling 800-222-8477, texting the letters TIPLA plus a tip to 274637, or by using the website http://lacrimestoppers.org.