The three-month-long search for a missing California woman came to a tragic end on the morning of March 25. Kristen Marti’s body was found by authorities after a lengthy search of Prefumo Canyon, about seven miles west of San Luis Obispo. Her January 9 disappearance is now considered a murder investigation. Police said in a statement after Marti’s, 26, body was found, “Based on the circumstances surrounding this investigation, it is being investigated as a homicide at this time.” Marti’s cause of death has not been made public.
KSBY reports that Marti’s body was found near a creek, away from the road in Prefumo Canyon. When Marti was last seen, she was with an unknown man in a maroon-colored sedan. Two days before Marti’s body was recovered, investigators said that they believed Marti was still in the county.
The KSBY report says that 45 searchers joined detectives as well as six K-9 search teams in an effort to find Marti.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Police Have a Person-of-Interest in the Case
Police had already said prior to Marti’s body being found that she was seen with a man in Prefumo Canyon. KSBY reports that investigators have a person-of-interest in the case. The identity of that person has not been revealed. Authorities had always maintained that Marti’s disappearance was being treated as suspicious. San Luis Obispo Lieutenant John Bledsoe told KSBY that investigators are “following the evidence” in an attempt to bring closure to Marti’s family.
2. Marti’s Mother Described the Trauma of Her Daughter’s Disappearance as ‘All-Consuming’
Speaking to KSBY, Marti’s mother, Kathy, described what it was like to have a missing child. Kathy Marti said, “I love her, I miss her. It’s all-consuming. Every waking minute. The only time you’re not thinking about it is when you’re sleeping and then you dream about her. I’m hoping that things turn out okay, but you know, the longer it goes on the more desperate you get. Just to go through this is… I wouldn’t wish it upon anybody.” Kathy Marti was present at the search for her daughter on March 25.
3. Marti Was ‘Known to Frequent Hotels’ in San Luis Obispo
A San Luis Obispo Police Department press release said that Marti had not contacted any friends or family since January 9 “which is unlike her.” The same press release says that Marti was “known to frequent hotels” in the San Luis Obispo-area. According to Marti’s Facebook profile, she is a native of San Luis Obispo. That same profile says that Marti attended Morro Bay High School.
4. Anybody Who May Have Seen Marti Is Urged to Call the San Luis Obispo Police Department
The San Luis Obispo Police Department and San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office led the search for Marty from Laguna Middle School on March 25, reports KSBY. Prior to the discovery of Marti’s body, Lieutenant John Bledsoe said, “With this amount of time that’s gone by, it doesn’t look promising but we’re trying to remain hopeful. Our goal is to be able to find her and-and solve this case, whether it’s a homicide or accidental we just need to bring some closure to this.”
Anybody with any information regarding Marti’s murder is asked to call the San Luis Obispo Police Department at 805-781-7312.
5. It’s 20 Years Marti’s Hometown Was Left Terrified by the ‘Sadist of San Luis Obispo’