An uncle searching Arkansas’ Crittenden County for Marilane Carter, 36, made the gruesome discovery Tuesday on a private farm in West Memphis, Crittenden County Chief Investigator Todd Grooms told The Post.
The body – which was discovered in the driver’s seat of Carter’s GMC Acadia SUV – had not been positively identified as of midday Wednesday, but it’s suspected to be that of Carter, Grooms said.
The gray SUV was inside a large shipping container occasionally used by farmers for storage.
No signs of foul play were found, Grooms said, adding that investigators believe she killed herself by asphyxia from carbon monoxide poisoning.
“No foul play is suspected at this time,” Grooms said. “She was traveling through here and found that place and this is where her journey ended.”
Carter’s purse and credit card were also recovered from the SUV. No note was left behind, Grooms said.
Carter, a mom of three and the wife of a pastor in Overland Park, Kansas, was last seen on Aug. 1 as she left for Birmingham, Alabama, where her brother-in-law said she planned to visit relatives and seek out mental health counseling.
An autopsy will be conducted to confirm the identity of the body, as well as to find a cause and manner of death, Grooms said.
Sheriff Mike Allen told reporters Tuesday it’s unclear exactly how the vehicle got onto the private property where it was found since it’s usually gated, WMC-TV reports.
“The family asks for your thoughts and prayers right now and in the upcoming days,” Carter’s brother-in-law, Brady McLaughlin, told AL.com.
Carter’s husband, Rev. Adam Carter, told the couple’s three children Tuesday that their mother had died, the outlet reports.
“He’s absolutely devastated,” McLaughlin said.
Overland Park police have said Carter purchased a plane ticket to travel to Alabama, but took a nap on Aug. 1 and decided to drive to Birmingham instead when she awoke, AL.com reports.
“That helps give a view into her mindset,” Det. Blake Larsen told reporters Friday.