A San Diego County murder investigation has moved north to Riverside County, as investigators announced yesterday the discovery of a body there they believe may be that of 22-year-old Brittany Dawn Killgore, the missing wife of a U.S. Marine deployed overseas.
The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department says Killgore was last reported seen Friday in Fallbrook, the rural San Diego County town where she lives, wearing an evening gown and going out with another Marine who is not her husband -- 45-year-old Louis Ray Perez. Authorities say Killgore and her husband Cory Killgore were estranged at that point, and that Brittany filed for divorce only last week.
What happened Friday night or afterward is not fully known, but Perez, who is stationed at Camp Pendleton, was immediately named a “person of interest” and questioned by investigators. On Sunday he was arrested for allegedly possessing a stolen AR-15 military assault rifle. A sheriff’s spokesman described him as “uncooperative and not completely forthcoming.”
Yesterday, sheriff’s investigators announced two more developments in the case: the body in Riverside County, found near Temecula about a mile from Lake Skinner, and the arrest of a woman believed to be involved.
Jessica Lynn Lopez, 27, was arrested Tuesday morning at a Ramada Inn near the San Diego Airport. Some reports described her as also being a Marine, but that could not be immediately confirmed.
As for Cory Killgore, 22, who was stationed in Afghanistan, he is being flown home and is due to be back at Camp Pendleton by the end of this week, a Marine spokesman said.
“Thank you everyone for the prayers and concern," he wrote on his Facebook page Tuesday. “I request you pray for her more then you do for me. I have family and friends for support. She is alone where ever she is.”
The identity of the body found in Riverside County has not been confirmed yet, and “positive identification of the body and the manner and cause of death will be determined by the Medical Examiner’s Office,” authorities said.