PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A person of interest in police custody has allegedly confessed to his role in the gruesome murder of a recent college graduate in Philadelphia earlier this week.
The body of 23-year-old Laura Araujo was found in a duffel bag in the 2200 block of N. Third Street in North Philadelphia Monday morning.
According to investigators, the crime began inside a boarding home in the city’s Mantua section. Araujo had recently just moved into the building and the suspect also lived at the home.
Police sources tell Eyewitness News reporter Walt Hunter that Araujo interrupted the suspect as he was stealing items from her room.
Sources say in the alleged confession, the male told investigators he beat and strangled the victim.
Sources also say the male admitted to dumping the victim’s body in a lot in Kensington. The victim was found in a duffel bag with her hands tied and trash bags covering her head and lower body.
Police believe she had been killed four to eight hours before her body was found.
Earlier Monday morning, a car that turned out to be Araujo’s was found burning 1600 block of South Bambrey Street, near Tasker, in the Grays Ferry section of the city.
Sources say while torching the victim’s car, the male suffered burns and when he went to a local hospital for treatment, hospital officials notified detectives.
The person of interest remains in police custody and formal charges are expected sometime Wednesday afternoon.
According to investigators, Araujo was a December 2013 graduate of the Art Institute of Philadelphia and had recently obtained a job at an area hotel. She had been in Philadelphia about four or five years, they say.