A Salt Lake woman who was missing for several days before her body was found Monday in Branson, Mo., died days earlier from asphyxiation.
The preliminary report by the Taney County, Mo., coroner's office determined Deborah Jones' death was "consistent with a homicide."
The body of Jones, 50, was found in a plastic storage container in the back seat of her Volkswagen Passat outside a motel.
Taney County coroner Kevin Tweedy said the cause of her death was asphyxiation, but he declined to say Wednesday what caused the asphyxiation. The preliminary report showed Jones had been dead between three to four days by the time her body was discovered Monday night.
Additional toxicology test results weren't expected to be completed for four to six weeks, he said. But arrangements were already being made to return Jones' body to her family.
Jones' former live-in boyfriend, Michael Jerome Doyel, 47, was being held without bail in the Taney County Jail on a fugitive from justice warrant. He waived extradition to Utah during a court appearance in Forsyth, Mo., Wednesday, but it was unclear when he would return.
Doyel and Patricia Murray, 59, of West Valley City, were found inside the motel where the car was found. Both were taken into custody by Branson police. Doyel was charged in Utah's 3rd District Court with kidnapping, a second-degree felony, for allegedly taking Murray.
Murray, who was residing at an assisted living facility in Utah, was not given permission to travel anywhere with Doyel, according to court documents.
Murray was released Tuesday by Branson police.