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Missing Arizona Teen Was Found Dead After Missing for Weeks

The body of a missing 19-year-old Arizona teenager was found in an isolated area of a Phoenix suburb on Monday afternoon, bringing a tragic end to a search that had consumed her family for weeks.

Kiera Bergman’s remains were discovered around 3 p.m. after a passerby discovered her body near a rural road in Buckeye, Arizona, and called police. The teen had missing for a month and was last seen on August 4 with her boyfriend.

Kiera Bergman

(photo credit: ABC screenshot)

The victim’s mother, Kiersten Bragg, flew to Arizona on August 11 after not hearing from her daughter for a few days. She and other family members held a “vigil of hope” for Bergman’s return. Chris Bragg, the victim’s father, told The Arizona Republic that the family “is devastated.”

“She [Kiersten] pretty much couldn’t talk. … She just told me to come home,” said Bragg. “Right now, we’re just waiting for them to release the body. They are waiting for some specialist to come in. Once they release her, we will pick her up and bring her home.”

The Phoenix Police Department is investigating the 19-year-old’s death as a homicide and suspect foul play. However, suspects have yet to be named.

“There is a suspect out there, but we don’t have anyone to name or charge at this time,” said Sgt. Vince Lewis. “We don’t not believe this was a suicide. There will be an autopsy performed by the medical examiner.”

Before Bergman’s disappearance, she moved from San Diego to Phoenix to live with her boyfriend, Jon-Christopher Clark. However, the couple broke up and the victim moved into an apartment with her friend Destiny Hall-Chand. Bergman and Clark reconciled, and he moved in with Hall-Chand and the victim.

Clark was the last person to see the victim and picked her up from work the morning of August 4. Hall-Chand said her roommate/co-worker seemed extremely upset before leaving with Clark. The 23-year-old told the Huffington Post that he and the victim got into an argument over money. He said she stormed off from the apartment, but he wasn’t too concerned.

“I didn’t really find it unusual until she wasn’t in contact with me,” Clark said. He also declared his innocence on his Instagram and wrote, “I love Kiera with all my heart and would never do anything negative to her or put her in harms way. … I have been nothing but open and honest with investigators and Kieras family.”

Clark was arrested for unrelated charges, but the Braggs believe he had something to do with their daughter’s disappearance.

The victim’s father told the newspaper, “This is absolutely not the way we ever imagined, we really hoped that we would have found her alive somewhere, but it does definitely give us some peace of mind.” 

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