OKLAHOMA CITY – A shocking twist in a high profile murder case.
The victim, Carina Saunders, was found inside a duffle bag, near a Bethany grocery store in Oct. 2011.
Now the criminal charges against two men accused of the brutal murder have been dropped by the district attorney’s office.
District attorney David Prater dismissed the murder charges without prejudice.
That means the charges can be re-filed against the suspects in the future.
In the meantime, it raises a lot of questions about the quality of the investigation performed by Bethany police.
Court records detailed how one suspect, Jimmy Massey, allegedly bragged, “He was involved in the homicide and described the fact they cut the girls arms and legs off.”
A second witness implicated Luis Ruiz and described seeing a video of the killing.
The dismissal of the murder charges against both Massey and Ruiz now casts doubt on that story.
“This dismissal means they’re having all sorts of problems with the case and with witnesses,” attorney David Slane said.
Attorney Slane represented one woman who claimed to have witnessed Saunders’ death but later recanted.
Slane points out the dismissal does not mean Ruiz and Massey are free from suspicion.
“The district attorney’s office is free to re-file at a later time if they choose but at this time they’re looking for more evidence to support those charges,” Slane said.
In fact, right now the OSBI continues to investigate who is responsible for Saunders’ murder.
“The case is still open and active,” OSBI spokesperson Jessica Brown said. “The OSBI has the duty to look through it and build a stronger case and we will do that.”
Massey continues to be held on a separate drug-related charge.
Neither the district attorney nor the Bethany police chief would talk about the case.