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West Valley City police identify victim in homicide investigation

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Posted at 9:00 AM, Feb 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-26 11:00:16-05

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah - Officers have confirmed the identity of a woman who was found badly injured in West Valley City Thursday night and later died, and police are looking for a suspect in the homicide investigation.

Hope Gabaldon. Image via Facebook.

Hope Gabaldon. Image via Facebook.

The victim has been identified as 21-year-old Hope Gabaldon. Police stated Friday night her vehicle, a silver 2007 Jeep Grand Cherokee with Utah plate W663BR, is still missing.

Police say if anyone comes across that vehicle, they should not touch it but should instead immediately call police.

Authorities said they are still searching for a suspect.

Officers were called about the injured woman near 3100 South and 40th West at about 10:30 p.m. Thursday. Emergency crews rushed her to the hospital, where she later died.

"Someone had discovered this woman lying at the side of the road, she was bleeding badly, they thought maybe she had been hit by a car and that the car had taken off," said Roxeanne Vainuku with West Valley City Police Department.

Hope Gabaldon. Image via Facebook.

Hope Gabaldon. Image via Facebook.

Police said after examining the woman they don't believe she was hit by a vehicle, but further details were not clear.

"What I can tell you at this point is that she had a number of traumatic injuries, and we just don't know exactly what caused them, so we're working very closely with the medical examiner's office to try to determine exactly what happened," Vainuku said.

The woman did not have a license or any other form of identification on her when she was found. Vainuku said the woman was too badly hurt to speak to anyone about what happened to her, and she died before she could recover enough to speak.

Officials said they would like to speak with anyone who might have information about the death or the victim at (801) 840-4000.