Arizona authorities are currently preparing to search a landfill southwest of Phoenix, hoping to find the remains of a woman who disappeared four months ago.
AZCentral reports that Christine Mustafa, 34, lived with her boyfriend, Robert John Interval Jr., 37, when she disappeared on May 10, while leaving work at a Phoenix Walgreens. According to her family, Mustafa had plans to move out and leave Interval. She reportedly grew frightened of him and planned to take out protective restraining order against him once she moved.
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When authorities questioned Interval about Mustafa’s disappearance, he said that he’d gotten into an argument with her and she simply vanished afterwards. He claimed he had nothing to do with her disappearance and had idea where she could be.
A few days after her disappearance, detectives knocked on Interval’s door to perform a welfare check on Mustafa’s 8-month-old baby girl. Detectives noted that Interval was holding a loaded .40-caliber handgun. Officers also noted that Mustafa’s car was at the residence. Interval said she walked to work on the day she disappeared.
Authorities originally listed Interval as a person of interest, but according to ABC13, Phoenix police arrested him on June 8 and charged him with one count of first-degree murder. Detectives said they gathered of information to develop probable cause to arrest Interval, despite not yet finding Mustafa’s body.
Meanwhile, police indicated that they asked officials at the undisclosed landfill to stop dumping trash because they have reason to believe Mustafa’s body may be in there. The expensive endeavor is planned to start in October and will require heavy machinery and enormous manpower.
Interval, who pleaded not guilty, is scheduled back in court on September 25.
[Feature Photo: Phoenix Police Department & Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office]