By Chris Caraveo
A man faces charges in the death of a woman reported missing in the West Valley after her baby was found alone on a roadway.
On Thursday, the Phoenix Police Department announced the finding of a body with significant burns in the afternoon on Wednesday.
Police said the body has been tentatively identified as that of 21-year-old Jasmine Dunbar, who was reported missing Tuesday night.
Around 10 p.m. Tuesday, police responded to the area of 83rd Avenue and Camelback Road for a baby found alone in a car seat along the roadway.
Officers arrived and found a 7-month-old girl and identification belonging to Ms. Dunbar.
Officers then contacted Ms. Dunbar’s godmother, who confirmed the baby was Ms. Dunbar’s. She told police Ms. Dunbar was last seen with an ex-boyfriend, identified as Antwaun Travon Ware. The two had left Ms. Dunbar’s apartment so Mr. Ware could take a paternity test, records show.
Around 9:40 a.m. Wednesday, Phoenix police announced Ms. Dunbar’s disappearance. Detectives assigned to the case issued a public bulletin asking for help in locating her.
Person of Interest
Earlier that day, Mr. Ware was located at his home near 7th Street and Baseline Road. Police said he agreed to come to police headquarters for an interview.
According to records, he initially said he and Ms. Dunbar had a disagreement and that he dropped her back at her apartment. He later changed his story, telling police he allegedly punched her several times and left her in a field near 107th Avenue and Camelback Road.
He also told police Ms. Dunbar was alive at that time and that he drove to 83rd Avenue and Camelback Road to drop off the baby girl in hopes someone would find and take care of her. The temperature was about 49 degrees Fahrenheit at the time of locating the baby.
Around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, a Phoenix police aircraft and officers searched the area for Ms. Dunbar. Police said officers located a dead body in the desert area at the end of Ball Park Boulevard, which runs to the west of Spring Training facility Camelback Ranch- Glendale.
Officials tentatively identified the body as that of Ms. Dunbar. Police said the body was significantly burned. Official identification is pending scientific analysis of the body.
Mr. Ware told police he had returned to the area where he left Ms. Dunbar, finding her dead. He then allegedly set her body on fire and watched the fire put itself out.
Authorities analyzed Mr. Ware’s cell phone usage, which registered as being used in the area of the body’s location.
Police developed probable cause to arrest Mr. Ware for one count each of first degree murder, kidnapping, abandoning a body and child abuse.
He was booked into a Maricopa County jail.
According to her Facebook page, Ms. Dunbar worked at Sonic and attended the Cortiva Institute, formerly the Arizona School of Massage Therapy, and the Steiner Institute of Esthetics.