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Stephanie Mayorga and Paige Escalera

BREAKING: Police reveal how missing North Carolina women likely died, confirm vehicle belonged to Paige Escalera

Wilmington Police Department confirmed on Tuesday that a vehicle found in a wooded area in Wilmington belonged to one of two women reported missing two weeks prior.

As CrimeOnline previously reported, police discovered two bodies on Monday, inside a grey 2013 Dodge Dart, off of Independence Blvd. and River Road  The vehicle matched the description of a car belonging to Paige Escalera, one of two recently engaged women who haven’t been seen since April 15.

In a Facebook post, the Wilmington Police Department said the bodies were too badly decomposed for immediate identification and that “there will be no further details provided today.” Although the women still have not been positively identified, authorities believe they found the bodies of Stephanie Mayorga, 27, and Escalera.

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Wilmington officials believe that the women died after an “extremely high velocity crash.”

“While the investigation continues, police believe the car may have been involved in an extremely high velocity crash. 911 records show that on April 15, police, fire, and EMS were dispatched to this area just before midnight,” Wilmington PD posted on Facebook.

“A caller advised that they saw a car in their rear view mirror heading west on Independence Boulevard, going at a high rate of speed, possibly hitting a wall and then going into the wooded area.”

After first responders arrived at the area last month, they searched for the vehicle but didn’t find anything. Authorities have now opened a traffic crash investigation in connection with the case. An autopsy on both women has been scheduled.

Earlier this month, CrimeOnline spoke with Escalera’s sister, Stevie Jenkins, who that the two women had recently become engaged and had just moved into the apartment with another roommate.

Today I woke up and the news from yesterday remains the same. With millions of questions still unanswered, I just…

Posted by Stevie Jenkins on Tuesday, May 5, 2020

 

Jenkins said the roommate didn’t realize she didn’t have to wait 48 hours before reporting the pair missing and didn’t contact the police for three days after they were last seen.

Jenkins added that her sister’s disappearance has taken an extra toll on her because she had recently rekindled their relationship after 10 years.

“My sister and I have struggled with our relationship since we were teens. We drifted and haven’t been involved much with one another in 10 years,” Jenkins said. “However, for Christmas this year we got to visit with one another.”

“As we joked and reminisced about our younger days we would laugh so hard and it felt so good to have my sister back. I could tell she felt it too … and how happy we both were to share this moment. We talked about her visiting me in Kansas and continuing our rekindled friendship. I felt like a piece of my heart that was missing for so long was finally put back in place. I didn’t know how much I needed her in my life.”

Check back for updates.

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[Feature Photo: Police Handout]