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Body of Erin Corwin and her unborn baby discovered in mine shaft

Erin Corwin
Erin Corwin
San Bernardino Sheriff's Office released photo

On June 28, Erin Corwin, wife of an active-duty Marine, went missing from Twentynine Palms, California, under somewhat suspicious circumstances. Since then, massive searches of remote areas surrounding her home have been conducted by law enforcement and volunteers. Yesterday, an urban search and rescue team recovered her body.

Erin, who was said to be pregnant at the time of her disappearance was found at the bottom of 140-foot mine shaft in a remote area of the desert. The old mine was located on federal property.

Erin’s remains were discovered late Saturday afternoon by a specially equipped search and rescue team. Several teams had previously searched rivers, lakes, and other old mine shafts before they made the grisly discovery.

Sunday, former Marine, and alleged paramour of Erin, Christopher Lee was arrested in Alaska for the death of Erin and her baby. Lee and his wife Nichole, were former neighbors of Jonathan and Erin Corwin. Nichole Lee has been listed as a “person of interest” in the murder case.

Until an autopsy is completed, the paternity of the unborn child and the cause of death cannot be confirmed. Dental records were used to confirm her identity. Media reports have listed Erin’s age at both 19 and 20.

Erin was first reported missing by her husband when she failed to return from a day-outing to Joshua Tree National Park where she was supposedly meeting her mother. Jonathan Corwin was ruled out as a suspect relatively soon and by all accounts cooperated with law enforcement.

Christopher Lee is being held at the Anchorage Correctional Complex until he can be extradited back to San Bernardino County. The San Bernardino District Attorney’s Office expects to have a list of charges against Christopher Lee and perhaps Nichole within the next 48 hours.

Authorities speculate that Christopher Lee, 24, wanted Erin dead because he was afraid his wife would discover the affair.