Florida mom missing during daughter’s custody handover found in shallow grave in Alabama

Florida mom Cassie Carli was discovered in a ‘shallow grave’ in an Alabama barn on Sunday. She had been missing for a week before (Pictures: Facebook / WRBC)

The body of a Florida mother who had been missing for a week was found buried in a shallow grave in Alabama on Saturday.

Cassie Carli, 37, was last seen on March 27 when she met the father of her four-year-old daughter for a child exchange in the parking lot of a Navarre Beach restaurant, authorities said.

Authorities in Santa Rosa County had been searching for the mother since she failed to return from meeting with her ex-boyfriend, Marcus Spanevelo, to exchange custody of their daughter.

Carli’s body was found inside a barn in Springville, Alabama, nearly 300 miles north of where she was last seen, Santa Rosa County Sheriff Bob Johnson said during a Sunday news conference.

Spanevelo was arrested in Tennessee for charges that include tampering with evidence, giving false information concerning a missing persons investigation and destruction of evidence. He has ties to the property where Carli was found ‘in a roundabout way,’ the sheriff said.

‘We discovered her body while executing a search warrant in Alabama. It was in a barn, in a shallow grave,’ Johnson said. Her identity was confirmed by a tattoo.

The sheriff said he notified Carli’s family in person on Sunday, adding that they were ‘crushed.’

‘It gives them some closure that they know where she’s at now. But still it’s their daughter … daughter and sister and it is terrible,’ Johnson said.

The four-year-old daughter shared between Carli and Spanevelo, Saylor, was safe with family as of Sunday, the sheriff said.

The tampering with evidence charge Spanevelo faces is related to Carli’s cellphone, which Johnson said he ‘basically got rid of it.’

When asked if the ex-boyfriend was cooperating with investigators, the sheriff replied ‘absolutely not.’

‘He was totally uncooperative, he never cooperated at all with us, he said. ‘It’s your baby’s mother and she’s missing and you’re not going to cooperate with authorities. That’s kind of a tell-tale,’ Johnson said.

In addition to search efforts from family and friends, investigators traveled over 1,500 miles in search of evidence.

Any potential additional charges are pending the results of Carli’s autopsy, which will take place Monday. No cause of death has been determined.

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