Police found the body of 22-year-old Savannah Spurlock in a shallow grave on the suspect’s property

Posted at 1:56 AM, Jul 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-17 06:09:12-04

Savannah Spurlock’s naked body, her feet bound with shipping tape, was found within multiple trash bags in a shallow grave in Garrard County, Kentucky, according to officers who testified Monday at a preliminary hearing.

David Sparks was arrested last week following the discovery of Spurlock’s remains on his parents’ property and his current home. A not guilty plea was entered on Sparks’ behalf Thursday afternoon, WLEX reported.

Spurlock, a 22-year-old mother of four, went missing six months ago after leaving a Lexington bar with three men — one of whom was 23-year-old Sparks, authorities said.

Spurlock was last seen in the early morning hours of January 5 in Sparks’ residence, according to Kentucky State Police Trooper Robert Purdy. Her remains were found July 10 after reports of a “foul odor” coming from a Garrard County property, CNN affiliate WLEX reported.

It was a tip from Spark’s father that led to the discovery of Spurlock’s body, according to WLEX.

Sparks initially told investigators Spurlock had woken up at his home after a night out and asked him where she was, Detective Tye Chavies testified. Sparks claimed he fell back asleep and when he woke up again around noon, Spurlock had left. He had told police Spurlock was not injured.

There were no details given about the cause of death and no testimony regarding when Spurlock was killed and how long her body had been in the 19-inch deep grave.

Based on the evidence presented during the hearing, the judge referred the case to a grand jury, which is expected to hear the case Wednesday for possible indictment.

Sparks has been charged with abuse of a corpse and tampering with physical evidence. He has not been charged with killing Spurlock, but police call him a “primary suspect,” according to WLEX.

She went out and vanished

On January 4, Spurlock went to a Lexington bar with some friends and was later seen leaving with three men.

She Facetimed her mom and told her she’d be home in the next several hours, but never returned, her family said in a Facebook post.

Purdy said authorities are waiting on autopsy results for a cause of death.

Sabrina Speratos, one of Spurlock’s best friends, told CNN she is certain the young woman did not know the three men she left with.

The two knew each other since high school and spoke to each other every day, Speratos said.

“Life before January was nothing but complete. We had each other and we had our families. Ever since then, a part of me has been missing,” Speratos told CNN.

There were no charges filed against the other two men, Purdy said.