Cause of Margay Edwards death undetermined
December 30, 2014
The Nye County Sheriff said today in a press release that the cause of Los Osos resident Margay Edwards death is undetermined and that foul play is not suspected.
Edwards’s body was discovered in September when ATV riders found her in an advanced stage of decomposition in the desert off Hafen Ranch Road in Nye County. Her body was lying about a half mile from the road on a dirt track.
Detectives found Edwards’s car and two cell phones about two and a half miles from the location of her body. The investigation into the electronic evidence has not yet concluded.
Following is the press release:
On Sept. 25, the body of Margay Edwards was found 1/4 mile in the Desert (true) East of Hafen Ranch Road approximately 3/4 mile (true) south from Indian Reservation Road intersection. Decomposition of Margay Edwards body was present.
Las Vegas Metro Air was requested and conducted an air search for her vehicle without results.
Margay Edwards body was transported to Clark County Coroner’s Office for a forensic examination.
The victim had been known to frequent the area, where she was found and was the subject of a call for service about 1 1/2 miles from where her body was discovered. Ms. Edwards was last seen near the dry lake bed on 14 Sept by 2 citizens from information that has come to our attention during an interview of the 2 citizens. Margay Edwards was fine, not in any distress in the rental vehicle she was driving, that is the last contact that can be reported.
The NCSO initiated a criminal investigation and classified her death as suspicious. Margay Edwards death could have been caused by events not of criminality, the classification of suspicious was deemed proper at the time.
The vehicle information NCSO received from family the 2014 metallic blue Hyundai Accent. plate number California 7ESZ966, was placed on Nevada Threat Analysis Center and NCIC on Sept. 25.
On October 2, Investigators Det. Logan Gibbs, Eric Murphy and Sheriff De Meo revisited the scene of where Margay Edwards was discovered.
Based upon the totality of the scene it was strongly believed that there should be another search initiated, an intensive search for the vehicle within Pahrump Valley focused in the South Valley area, including the desert area.
There was a strong opinion that the vehicle was still within the Pahrump Valley area. The Sheriff requested a renewed search for the vehicle within the Pahrump Valley area, starting in the South Valley area.
Det. J. McGill contacted Las Vegas Metro Air and again requested and the search area was expanded into the desert area south of where Margay Edwards was discovered. To cover areas that NCSO vehicles would have difficulty or could not travel on.
While NCSO ability to search the desert area and ravens had limitations for most of our vehicles all units were encouraged to search the south area of the area in all the streets and desert areas where patrol vehicles can travel safely and carefully.
Metro Air arrived in the Pahrump Valley area on Saturday 4 October 2014, and quickly discovered the missing vehicle driven by Ms. Edwards in a ravine, several miles from where Margay Edwards was discovered. Las Vegas Metro Air relayed the GPS coordinates to Detective McGill.
Detectives Joe McGill, Eric Murphy and Sheriff Anthony De Meo using an ATV were eventually able to reach the vehicle after navigating through the terrain. Upon arriving on scene it was apparent that the vehicle became disabled because the driver went off of passable desert ground into a ravine and collided with rocks and the ravine wall which disabled the vehicle.
The vehicle was locked with Margay Edwards property inside, including clothing, purse which contained 2 cellular phones and a MacBook Pro laptop computer. No signs of foul play were discovered at that time and the only one set of footprints in the area were discovered in searching the area around the vehicle and desert.
The footprints discovered were walking in the direction of where Margay Edwards body was discovered. Based on the size of the footprints leaving the scene it was determined that they were the proper size match of Margay Edwards shoe size.
The vehicle was recovered placed in a secure area within the NCSO, once a warrant was obtained the vehicle was searched. Further examination of the items of clothing and all other items impounded from the vehicle revealed “there were no signs of foul play.”
After both Clark County Coroner’s Office (CCCO) and UNT (University of North Texas, the Clark County Coroner’s Office, forensic anthropology consultants,) completed their investigations; On 9 December 2014, Margay Edwards body was released in order for the family to make the necessary arrangements.
Both autopsies from the Clark County Coroner’s Office and UNT proved no signs of any criminality were present, whatever caused Margay Edwards to collapse and die where she was found could not be positively determined. Both CCCO and UNT, classified the death as Un-Determined, No Criminal Involvement.
Detective Joseph McGill kept the family informed during the investigation to ensure they knew how the investigation was proceeding and the outcome of the findings, along with being the liaison between NCSO and LVMPD.
If anyone has information into the death of Margay Edwards please contact Karen Velie (805) 234-1703.