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Family members share grief after missing Sandy woman believed to be found dead, suspect charged with murder

Posted at 5:53 PM, Oct 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-14 23:30:27-04

JUAB COUNTY, Utah -- Police arrested Cody Young for murder Saturday after search and rescue volunteersfound the body of who they believe was Jan Pearson Jenkins--a 64-year-old woman from Sandy who went missing more than a week ago.

"You hold on to hope, and the best way to do that is to believe what the last person who was with Jan was saying about the whole thing," said Jace Pearson, Pearson-Jenkin's younger brother.

The last person with Pearson-Jenkins was Young, who told the family he had gone camping with her and had an argument.

Printed in a Probable Cause statement released Sunday, Young told police that after the argument "he could not take it anymore."

Pearson said Young told them he drove off in his van,leaving their sister with nothing in the cold.

"If Jan had a choice to leave the van and it was a choice for her, she made a bad choice," said Pearson. "But it may have been, she didn't have a choice."

Charged with one count of murder, police said the investigation is far from over.

"What happened yesterday was a lot all at once, but there's quite a bit of investigation left to do," said Under-Sheriff Brent Pulver with the Juab County Sheriff's Office.

Meanwhile, Pearson and his family are focusing on remembering the sister they loved.

"That's what we do now," said Pearson. "We cling on to those great memories and realize that Jan was just full of love and light, and became a victim of substance abuse."

Through it all, Pearson said his family has felt grateful Jan's his sister.

"It supersedes any of the grief, the remorse, all of the other negative emotions," he said.