Adrienne Salinas' Entire Body Wasn't Found
After the Tempe Police Department released the autopsy report on Tempe teenager Adrienne Salinas, local media accounts concluded that the report didn't say much.
However, the autopsy report indicates that Salinas' entire body was not recovered from the Apache Junction wash where it was found in August, nearly two months after she was last seen.
"These nearly complete (please see Skeletal Chart) skeletal remains [redacted]," the autopsy report states, with more than one full line blacked out. "Much desiccated skin and ligamentous tissue are present, as is a small patch of presumed hear hair adhering to what appears to be desiccated skin of the neck."
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Several other lines of the autopsy report are also blacked out. There's no mention of Salinas' head or hands throughout the report.
Tempe Police Officer Greg Duarte tells New Times the skeletal chart is not for release, due to the ongoing investigation. He says he can't comment on the apparently missing body parts.
Salinas, a student at Gateway Community College, was headed to her boyfriend's house on June 15, when she was last seen by friends. Salinas and he boyfriend had been arguing earlier that night after they were together at a party, and it appears that Salinas never made it to her boyfriend's house.
Police have said that the two people she was supposed to see that morning -- the boyfriend and a cab driver she called -- aren't suspects. Salinas apparently started driving to her boyfriend's house but hit a median and blew out her tires, a witness told police. She called the cab at that point, but the driver never found her, and her cellphone was shut off.
Her cause of death was not determined.
The autopsy report notes that, in addition to DNA, Salinas was identified through a comparison of hospital records, specifically through images of her thorax (between her neck and abdomen). Salinas had some sort of surgery on or around her ribs in January, and defects on two of her ribs were noted in the autopsy report.
Additionally, a source suggested one of the redacted parts of the report could have been skull measurements. That source also says the autopsy suggests she was buried nude in that wash. A space in the autopsy for "clothing and personal effects" is left blank.
Still, police have been careful not to call this a definite homicide investigation, but rather a "death investigation."