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Sheriff's Office

Posted on: August 29, 2019

Body Found in Arizona Confirmed to be Missing New Mexico Man

Flagstaff, AZ – The body of missing New Mexico man, Craig Cavanaugh, 44 of Farmington, was identified in Coconino County, Arizona.

Cavanaugh was reported missing to the Farmington Police Department on July 5, 2019. He was last seen in Farmington on July 4, 2019 reportedly headed to Peoria, Arizona for a job but never arrived. Cavanaugh’s phone was last pinged in Payson, Arizona on July 4th.  Cavanaugh’s credit cards were used by three males in Payson, Glendale, and Peoria between July 5 and July 7, 2019. Cavanaugh’s missing 2012 Toyota Tacoma truck was later recovered in New Mexico on July 12, 2019.

Farmington police detectives received a tip that Cavanaugh may be found in the Woods Canyon Lake area, just outside Forest Lakes, AZ and notified Coconino County Sheriff’s Office. Coconino County deputies and the Search and Rescue unit conducted a limited search of the area based off this vague information but found nothing.

Coconino County Sheriff’s detectives joined the investigation with Farmington Police detectives, as well as several Phoenix area law enforcement agencies and Gila County Sheriff’s Office. The males using the credit cards were identified by Farmington detectives working with the Arizona law enforcement agencies. The investigation determined these males are not considered suspects in Cavanaugh’s disappearance.

Detectives were able to identify two possible suspects who were believed to be with Cavanaugh in Payson on July 4th. Coconino County detectives located and interviewed one of the suspects, who provided some information that led both Coconino and Navajo County Sheriff’s detectives to a wooded area just off Highway 260 outside Heber, AZ where the body of a deceased male was located on August 5, 2019.  Identification of the deceased could not be readily made. However, Cavanaugh was identified later by fingerprints. 

Coconino County and Navajo County Sheriff’s Office are continuing the investigation of this case.

Coconino County Sheriff’s Office will be the contact agency for any further tips or information regarding this case. They can be contacted at 928-774-4523. No further details are being released at this time.

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