New, gruesome details have surfaced in the murder of 22-year-old Jenna Burleigh, the Temple University student who was last seen leaving a bar near campus with the man who is now the prime suspect behind her slaying.
Investigators believe that Joshua Hupperterz – who was arrested Saturday and charged with murder and abuse of a corpse, among other counts – killed Burleigh at his North Philadelphia apartment, loaded her body into a storage bin, and transported it to his mother’s home in nearby Jenkinstown, WCAU-TV reported.
Hupperterz then hired an unknowing Lyft driver to transport Burleigh’s remains over 100 miles away to Wayne County, Pennsylvania, where authorities eventually discovered the body. She was found on the property of the suspect’s grandmother.
In addition to the aforementioned counts, Hupperterz faces charges of tampering with and fabricating evidence and other related offenses. He was arraigned on separate drug charges, court records revealed.
Lyft expressed remorse for Burleigh’s slaying in a statement to WPVI-TV: “The allegations are devastating. We stand ready to work with the authorities in their investigation.”
It is unclear whether the Lyft driver had any idea what Hupperterz carried in the storage bin.
According to the Wayne County Coroner, Burleigh died of blunt trauma and strangulation, with the manner of death ruled as a homicide. Hupperterz’s roommate claims that he saw the 29-year-old former Temple student return to the apartment with cleaning supplies to get rid of blood.
When investigators executed a search warrant on Hupperterz’s residence, they nevertheless discovered blood and a large quantity of drugs, but Burleigh’s body had already been moved.
Surveillance video from the night of Burleigh’s death shows her walking alongside Hupperterz at around 2:00 am after leaving a bar located near his apartment. She was reported missing the next day by concerned friends and relatives when she did not return home.