Body found in river confirmed to be missing mother

(WMC-TV) – The body found in the Loosahatchie River Thursday morning is confirmed to be that of missing mother Karen Thomas.

The 31-year-old mother of two was last seen Thursday night leaving her home on Welchlawn Cover around 10 p.m. She was reported missing when she did not show up to work the next day.

Her 2004 Chevrolet Trailblazer was located abandoned in a parking lot on Summer Avenue Monday morning. Police did not release information about what, if anything, was found in the vehicle.

Family members tell Action News 5 Thomas was going through a divorce and was recently threatened by an ex-boyfriend. They also said someone keyed her SUV days before she disappeared.

Thomas' body was found by a passerby Thursday morning in the Loosahatchie River near Watkins Street west of Thomas Street in Frayser.

Police are investigating the death as a homicide. They have not yet said whether Thomas was murdered at the river or if the crime happened elsewhere.

"We received information from a passerby in the area, who looked in the water and saw what they appeared to think was a body," explained Washington.

It took almost four hours, but Thomas' body was recovered from the river and was taken to a forensics lab for an autopsy.

Family members of Karen Thomas spent the entire day on the scene where the body was found even before it was confirmed to be that of the missing mother.

"We've been searching every day, every day in this area. We just didn't come to the river," said family friend Nyesha Brown. "Mr. Joe (search volunteer) told me he was going to check this river today and he texted me back and said, 'I found something. I don't know if it's a body, a dummy, or what.'"

Thomas' husband, Terrence, was reportedly the last person to see her alive. His family also showed up on the scene.

"Anytime something like this happens, the husband or the spouse is going to be the number one suspect," said Terrence Thomas' brother.

Terrence Thomas' brother told Action News 5 he went to the scene only to show support and said no assumptions should be made.

"I don't think anyone should jump to any conclusions until all the facts are on the table," he said.

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