Texas woman’s death being investigated as a murder

Body found in the trunk of a car that crashed in Nebraska.
The body of Michelle Roenz (right) was found in the trunk of a car driven by her son Tyler Roenz.
The body of Michelle Roenz (right) was found in the trunk of a car driven by her son Tyler Roenz.(Harris County, Texas, Sheriff's office)
Published: Oct. 17, 2022 at 5:18 PM CDT
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) — The death of a woman whose body was found in the trunk of a car driven by her son is being investigated as a homicide.

The body of 49-year-old Michelle Roenz was found in the car which crashed on Interstate 80 near Wood River. Her son, 17-year-old Tyler Roenz was injured in the crash and is being treated at an Omaha hospital. Hospital authorities declined to release his condition citing privacy regulations.

The Harris County, Texas, Sheriff’s office said the pair were reported missing by her husband Thursday. According to NBC affiliate KPRC, Michelle’s husband told authorities that he found what appeared to be a tooth and a trail of blood in the garage of their home. The blood trail led to the couple’s bedroom where the husband found four more teeth as well as his wife’s purse and cell phone.

The Harris County homicide unit was called in to investigate. The sheriff’s office said it then issued an alert for the pair. Investigators notified the Nebraska State Patrol Friday afternoon that the pair were in Nebraska. The State Patrol said a trooper spotted the car on westbound I-80 just west of the Grand Island exit.

A traffic stop was attempted, but the car, driven by Tyler Roenz, fled. The pursuit continued at speeds over 100 miles an hour until the car struck a semi, left the road and crashed into a tree in the ditch about two miles west of the Wood River exit.

Michelle Roenz’ body was found in the car’s trunk. Her death is being investigated as a murder.

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office said primary reports indicates Michelle Roenz died from results of strangulation and blunt force trauma.

The Nebraska State Patrol is coordinating with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office of Texas for extradition of the minor once he is released from the hospital.

Investigators urges anyone with information about this case to contact the HCSO homicide unit at (713) 274-9100.