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Ignacio man arrested in death of missing woman

Body found near County Road 310 and U.S. Highway 550 south of Durango
Luis Raul Valenzuela, 34, was taken into custody Saturday on suspicion of second-degree murder involving the death of Raeanna Burch-Woodhull. (Courtesy of the Colorado Bureau of Investigation)

A 34 year-old Ignacio man is being held on suspicion of second-degree murder involving the death of 28-year-old Raeanna “Nikki” Burch-Woodhull, according to a news release issued Sunday by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.

The suspect was identified during the course of an investigation by the CBI.

Luis Raul Valenzuela was taken into custody on Saturday. Investigators believe Burch-Woodhull knew Valenzuela but have not released more information about the investigation or a possible motive. Burch-Woodhull had multiple tattoos with the name “Luis” on her face.

(Courtesy of the Colorado Bureau of Investigation)

Law enforcement located Burch-Woodhull’s body on Saturday near U.S. Highway 550 and County Road 310 south of Durango.

A preliminary identification of the remains was made by La Plata County Coroner Jann Smith.

The CBI is working with the Ignacio Police Department, the 6th Judicial District Attorney’s Office and the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives Office of the Department of Public Safety.

A CBI Missing Endangered Alert was issued Saturday at the request of the Ignacio Police Department.

According to the alert, Burch-Woodhull was last seen about 2 a.m. Nov. 27 in the 600 block of Goddard Avenue in Ignacio. Burch-Woodhull was in the second trimester of her pregnancy at the time of her death.

Valenzuela will make his first appearance Monday in La Plata County Court.

tbrown@durangoherald.com

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