Prosecutors: Slain ex-model ID'd through serial number on breast implants
By GILLIAN FLACCUS AND ROB GILLIES, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Last Updated: 21st August 2009, 8:55pm
BUENA PARK, California - An ex-model found stuffed in a bloodstained suitcase without fingers or teeth was so badly mutilated that authorities had to use breast implants to identify her body, prosecutors said Friday.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Marshals Service offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Ryan Alexander Jenkins, a wealthy reality TV show contestant who was charged Thursday with murder in the gruesome slaying of Jasmine Fiore.
Detectives tracked the serial number on the implants because they could not use fingerprints or dental records, said Farrah Emami, a spokeswoman for the Orange County district attorney's office.
Fiore's body was found Aug. 15 in a trash bin in Buena Park, an Orange County city about 20 miles (32 kilometres) southeast of Los Angeles.
Authorities believe Jenkins, a contestant on VH1's "Megan Wants a Millionaire," may have fled more than 1,000 miles to reach his native Canada.
Buena Park police Lt. Steve Holliday said Jenkins, a native of Calgary, Alberta, is possibly armed with a handgun. Prosecutors recommended bail of $10 million upon his arrest and said he had significant resources to finance his flight.
Prosecutors revealed the U.S. Coast Guard briefly pursued a boat Wednesday off the northwest coast of Washington state that was registered to Jenkins, but it eluded them. The Coast Guard was unable to verify that Jenkins was aboard but believe he was, Emami said.
Authorities in Whatcom County, Washington, have said they received a report that a man matching Jenkins' description arrived by boat Wednesday at Point Roberts, U.S. territory about 16 kilometres away at the tip of a peninsula reachable by land only from Canada. Authorities believe Jenkins walked across the border to British Columbia.
Jenkins' car and an empty boat trailer were found at a marina in the northwest Washington town of Blaine, just across the bay from Point Roberts.
Canadian authorities have since ended a massive border search using helicopters, ground police and dogs but continued their investigation, Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sgt. Duncan Pound said. Tips in Canada were "on the low end," he said.
However, a Thursday news conference in Southern California prompted phone tips to American authorities that were being pursued, said Tom Hession, chief inspector for the U.S. Marshals Service's regional fugitive task force.
He declined to elaborate.
Jenkins is a real estate developer and investor who is also the son of a prominent Canadian architect. On the reality show, he said he had between $1 million and $2.5 million, Hession said, adding the money could help Jenkins stay ahead of police or work against him.
"It could be an area where he may not have access to that wealth, where he has assets that he has to sell or something like that and then he's going to have to expose himself to potential arrest," Hession said.
Hession declined to say if authorities were watching Jenkins' assets as part of their investigation.
"When we're looking for someone who's a fugitive, we try to find out everything we can about that person," he said. "We're going to turn every rock over."
Fiore and Jenkins were briefly married in a quickie Las Vegas wedding in March and had been fighting in recent months. Prosecutors said the two checked into a San Diego hotel Aug. 13, and Jenkins checked out the next morning. Fiore was not seen alive again.
Fiore's mother, Lisa Lepore, told The Associated Press her daughter had the marriage annulled in May. However, there were no court records of an annulment in either Clark County, Nev