NELSON COUNTY, Va. — The Nelson County Sheriff's Office said Wednesday that investigators found the remains of Alexis Tiara Murphy who had been missing since August 3, 2013.
The sheriff's office shared the news on its Facebook page.
Murphy disappeared after she went to a gas station in Lovingston. Local, state, and federal agencies searched for her at the time after they got a number of leads, but they weren't able to find her. Since 2013, other searches took place, with investigators expanding the search area each time.
The sheriff's office said investigators found Murphy's remains on Dec. 3, 2020. They were on private property near Stagebridge Road, along Route 29 in Lovingston. Murphys' remains were taken to the Central District Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) in Richmond for positive identification. The medical examiner's office identified the remains and told investigators on Feb. 5, 2021.
The sheriff's office waited to make its announcement publicly so that Murphy's family had time to grieve and make proper arrangements.
In 2014, a jury in Nelson County found Randy Allen Taylor guilty of Murphy's murder. He received two life sentences for charges related to the case.
The sheriff's office thank Murphy's family, friends, classmates, teammates and the community for their help and patience as they worked to find Alexis. Its Facebook post said that Murphy's family members asked for privacy. They issued this statement:
Our family is so grateful for the continuing love, support and prayers for Alexis and our family over the past 7 years. While we have been grieving the loss of Alexis since 2013, we remained hopeful that she would be found alive and well. Alexis was the fashionista, athlete and joker of our family; we were blessed to have loved her for 17 years and her memory will continue to live on through us all. Our family would like to extend a heartfelt thanks and sincere gratitude to the citizens of Nelson County, the FBI, the Virginia State Police, the Nelson County Sheriff's Office and all of the search and rescue teams for your commitment and unwavering support to find Alexis. You all kept the promise made in 2013, to bring Alexis home!
During this time, we ask that you continue to lift our family up in prayer and in the words of Alexis, "Keep Hope Alive."