ELOY, Az. – An Oklahoma man was arrested after his deceased wife was found in the passenger seat of his vehicle as he traveled through Arizona.
On Monday, May 13, 2019, a detective was at a Carl’s Jr. restaurant on Toltec road when an employee made contact with him and told him that he just witnessed two naked people inside a vehicle. The employee said that the vehicle went through the drive thru and when the driver drove up to get the food, he noticed the odd situation.
The detective conducted a traffic stop on the I-10 Freeway near Toltec Road to check on the well being of the vehicle’s occupants. The detective made contact with the driver, Rodney Puckett, 70, who was only wearing underwear. As the detective was speaking with Puckett he noticed the deceased woman, later identified as Puckett’s wife, 74-year-old Linda Puckett in the passenger seat. The position of the completely naked woman’s body caused concern since her head was resting on the floorboard and her legs were up towards the headrest.
The detective checked for a pulse on the woman, who he confirmed was deceased. When asked, Rodney told the detective that his wife had died at a hotel in El Paso,Texas. Rather than reporting her death, he said he moved her deceased body into the vehicle and continued on the trip.
According to a news release, surveillance footage showed Rodney and Linda Puckett checking into the El Paso hotel room in the evening of May 12, 2019. In the early morning on May 13, 2019, Rodney was captured pushing a luggage cart out of his room. Police said that the Linda’s body appeared to be concealed under a blanket on the cart.
Rodney told authorities that his wife was unresponsive and he believed she had died. He loaded her body into the vehicle and continued toward the planned destination.
The Pinal County Medical Examiner found that Linda had my indications of blunt force trauma. Her cause of death has still not been determined. Rodney remains in jail for concealment of a body and may face additional charges.
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