Missing Kentucky Mom Was Shot, Struck In The Head With Hatchet Before Her Body Was Burned, Sheriff Says

Danelle Powell has been charged with murder in the death of LeeAnna Brumley, who went missing in May.

By Jill Sederstrom
Danelle Nicole Powell Pd

A Kentucky woman is accused of attacking a missing mother with a hatchet, shooting her and setting fire to the body.

Danelle Powell, 33, has been charged with murder in connection to the death of 25-year-old LeeAnna Brumley, who was last seen by her family in May.

The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office said in a release obtained by Oxygen.com that investigators discovered human bones in a field off Charter Oaks Road in a northern part of the county last week. The remains have been sent to the state medical examiner’s office for positive identification; however, authorities have said they believe the “partial remains” belong to the missing mother.

Investigators were able to make the arrest after the Major Crimes Task Force put in “countless hours” into Brumley’s disappearance, the sheriff’s office said. The Cajun Coastal Search and Rescue also searched the area where the body was discovered in an attempt to find other evidence connected to the case. 

Brumley’s family became concerned about her in May, after not seeing or hearing from her and noticing that her social media accounts had gone quiet, local station WLEX-TV reports.

“It’s unbelievable,” her sister Faith Duggins said of the arrest. “It’s horrible. All we done since May is go through hell about it.”

Authorities believe Brumley and Powell had been staying together at the home of Gerald Hendrick when Powell lured Brumley away from the home and killed her, the local station reports.

She had reportedly been shot, hit in the head with a hatchet and set on fire, according to local station WKYT.

Her family didn't know how Brumley and Powell knew each other, but said she may have met her on social media.

A spokesman from the sheriff’s office told Oxygen.com Hendricks is also considered a suspect in Brumley’s disappearance and murder, but has not been formally charged. He is facing charges of rape and kidnapping in a separate unrelated case.

Another man, identified as Corky Hendricks, is considered a person of interest, according to WKYT.

Brumley leaves behind a young son. Her family said that although she had struggled with drugs, she loved her son.

“She loves him. She didn’t mean for it to happen,” Duggins told WLEX-TV. “He’s always going to be her little boy.”

Powell was arrested Thursday at her apartment “without incident” and is currently being held in the Pulaski County Detention Center, the sheriff’s office said.

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