UPDATE (June 28, 2016 1:54 p.m.):
The autopsy on Rebekah Jea Strausbaugh's body has indicated that the cause of her death was strangulation and the manner of her death was homicide.
Original release (June 28, 2016 11:13 a.m.):
A missing person investigation in Pennsylvania has led to a homicide investigation in Baltimore County.
At 3:15 p.m. Sunday afternoon, York Area Regional Township Police responded to a home in the 200 block of Cambridge Drive in Red Lion, PA for a missing person report. The complainant told police that he had not seen 30-year-old Rebekah Jea Strausbaugh since June 24th. She was going to Baltimore for the weekend and was supposed to return that day.
As part of the missing person investigation, officers responded to Strausbaugh’s home in the 200 block of Cambridge Drive, to speak with Strausbaugh’s boyfriend, 48-year-old Michael Anthony Morant.
The investigation has indicated that Strausbaugh and Morant lived together at the Cambridge Drive home. On June 25, Morant went to Baltimore City to look for Strausbaugh. He located her at the Shake Shack on Pratt Street and they both got into his car and drove north-bound on I-83. While they were in the car, they began to argue. He pulled off of I-83 to the area around Ensor Mill Road and Belfast Road in Sparks, MD. They got out of the car and continued to argue. The argument turned physical resulting in injuries to Strausbaugh that left her unresponsive. When Strausbaugh did not respond to Morant, he drug her body into the woods and covered her with a blanket.
Baltimore County Police Homicide Detectives located Strausbaugh’s body in the woods in the 15500 block of Ensor Mill Road 21152. Strausbaugh’s body was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore City for an autopsy.
Michael Anthony Morant has been charged with first-degree murder and is being held without bail at the Baltimore County Detention Center.
This incident remains under investigation by the Baltimore County Police Homicide Unit.