Grandmother’s body found in storage tote partially buried in desert

Local News

Matthew Ayala (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The cell phone records of a missing woman’s grandson helped lead police to her body which had been dumped in the desert.

The arrest report for 29-year-old Matthew Ayala also revealed police found Yolanda Ayala’s mattress and other bloody items in the trash dumpster where she lived in northwest Las Vegas.

Ayala was arrested Tuesday after his grandmother’s body was found by a Nye County Sheriff’s deputy who thought a partially buried tote in the desert appeared suspicious. Police had been looking in the area after Ayala’s cell phone records showed he was there around the time his grandmother disappeared.

The arrest report said Ayala told family members who had reported the woman missing on Jan. 2 that she had died in her apartment and her body was taken to a local hospital. However, police could find no record of her at a hospital or the coroner’s office.

Police did discover evidence in apartment including blood on a towel and in the kitchen sink. They also found the woman’s bedding, mattress and box springs in a nearby trash dumpster.

The report said police discovered Ayala rented a U-Haul truck on the evening of Jan. 1 and through information on his cell phone were able to determine he traveled from the Las Vegas valley to Nye County and back.

The Nye County deputy became suspicious when he noticed fresh drag marks leading to two totes partially buried in the desert. The report said Yolanda Ayala died from a gunshot wound to the head.

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