A California man was charged with murder on Tuesday after authorities found what they believe to be the remains of his missing wife in the Santa Cruz Mountains area, Los Gatos-Monte Sereno police announced.
John Yeager, 56, is accused of murdering his wife, Ying Ying “Dawn” Yu, 40, whose job reported her missing on Jan. 8, police said.
According to police, Yu last spoke to her employer before Jan. 1 and could not be reached since then.
The Santa Cruz Mountains in California.
Detectives who spoke to Yeager said the information he provided was inconsistent. Further investigation revealed evidence of an alleged domestic violence incident on the night of Dec. 31.
Police also noted in the statement that Yeager and Yu lived with children in the home, and that authorities were working on the investigation to ensure their safety.
According to a probable cause affidavit cited by the local news outlet East Bay Times, investigators said neighbors’ security footage showed Yu running out of their home and yelling for help.
Police said the footage then showed Yeager grabbing Yu by the shoulders. In the footage, Yu repeatedly asked if Yeager was going to take her back to beat her to death, according to the outlet.
Yeager was booked into jail on Jan. 11 in relation tothe apparent domestic violence incident shown in the video. He allegedly confessed to his wife’s murder two days later.
Yeager “admitted to strangling his wife” with a rope that night, then dumping her body in the Santa Cruz Mountains area, according to an affidavit cited by the East Bay Times.
Police searching a remote area where Yeager allegedly said he dumped his wife’s body found human remains believed to be Yu’s. The remains were taken to the medical examiner’s office the next day. Though investigators believe the remains belong to Yu, they have not been officially identified yet.
The Santa Clara medical examiner’s office did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for an update on Friday. The Santa Clara public defender’s office did not respond to HuffPost’s request for a statement.
Need help? In the U.S., call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) for the National Domestic Violence Hotline.