Sheriff: Woman’s body found in suitcase alongside North Carolina river

RALEIGH, N.C. — The body of a woman was found inside a suitcase near the shore of a North Carolina river Monday morning, authorities said.

Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker said a witness contacted Raleigh police Monday and reported seeing a body along a section of the Neuse River Trail, news outlets reported.

The case is being investigated as a homicide. A cause of death wasn’t immediately released.

Baker declined to say whether the body is that of a pregnant woman who was reported missing Thursday.

On Sunday, the sheriff’s office said it was searching for 28-year-old Brittany Samone Smith, who was last seen near Fox Run Drive in Wendell.

Officials said Smith is “noticeably pregnant,” almost 5 feet tall and 115 pounds.

Baker said the sheriff’s office has “people of interest” it wants to talk to and was in the area early Monday morning on a tip prior to receiving the witness call from police.

“We’re going to find out who’s responsible, I can tell you that,” Baker told media outlets. “If this, in fact, is the young lady we’ve been looking for all weekend long, someone is responsible for that. That doesn’t just happen.”

Authorities said anyone with information on the case should contact the department.