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Cause And Manner Of Death Undetermined For Florida Mother Found Buried In Alabama Barn

Cassie Carli disappeared around the time she was scheduled to meet her ex-boyfriend, Marcus Spanevelo, for a child custody exchange in a Florida parking lot. 

By Jax Miller
Killer Motive: What Drives People To Kill?

The cause and manner of death of a missing Florida mother found dead in Alabama will remain a mystery.

Following a days-long search, the body of 37-year-old Cassie Carli of Navarre Beach, Florida was found in a shallow grave earlier this year in a central Alabama barn. The abandoned structure was linked to Carli’s ex-boyfriend, Marcus Spanevelo, 34, whom Carli was supposed to meet for a custody exchange of their child on the night of her March disappearance.

On Monday, St. Clair County Coroner Dennis Russell released that a postmortem examination by the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences concluded Carli’s cause and manner of death are “undetermined,” according to AL.com.

Spanevelo was charged with tampering with physical evidence, providing false information to authorities during their missing persons investigation and destruction of evidence. However, he was never charged in connection to Carli’s possible murder.

Investigators, including Santa Rosa County Sheriff Bob Johnson, previously announced they hoped the autopsy results would change that.

RELATED: Man Waives Extradition Back To Florida To Face Charges In Connection With Ex-Girlfriend’s Death

“We definitely have a great case,” Johnson stated in April. “I think once the autopsy is done and you see the charges filed, you’ll understand. I think we have a great case, and he’s either going to spend the rest of his life in prison or he’s going to get the needle. Hopefully, the needle.”

Requests to the St. Clair County District Attorney’s Office by Oxygen.com were not immediately returned.

Missing women Cassi Carli and suspect Marcus Spanevelo

Carli and her 4-year-old daughter, Saylor, vanished on March 27, around the same time she and Spanevelo were scheduled for child drop-off in a parking lot behind Juana’s Pagodas restaurant in Navarre Beach, in accordance with a pre-planned custodial arrangement.

Both were reported missing the next day.

Sheriff Johnson cited foul play, saying it was “concerning” when Carli’s vehicle was found abandoned two days later, with her purse still inside.

Few details were released in connection to Carli's disappearance, but the child was found safe on March 30 in Tennessee, a couple of days before authorities announced Spanevelo’s Tennessee arrest.

On April 3, one day after Spanevelo’s arrest, Carli’s body was discovered in Springville, Alabama, nearly 300 miles north of where she disappeared just northeast of Birmingham. A tattoo found on the remains helped investigators confirm it was the missing mother.

Officials say the current charges against Spanevelo stem from the destruction of Carli’s mobile phone when Spanevelo allegedly threw it from his truck — but not before allegedly sending outgoing texts while posing as Carli.

Spanevelo pleaded not guilty to the charges in April and is being held at a Santa Rosa county jail after ultimately waiving extradition from Tennessee to Florida. He appeared in court in September when the judge ordered his trial begin on the week of Oct. 10, according to ABC Pensacola affiliate WEAR-TV.

Per court records reviewed by the Pensacola News-Journal, jury selection is expected to begin on Oct. 17.

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