Though questions swirl around how she died, the body of Amanda Stevenson, 20, was finally located Tuesday in a Texas creek, roughly 16 miles away from where she was last seen just over a week ago.
The tragic discovery was made by Victoria County Sheriff’s Office and the announcement was issued Tuesday afternoon during a police news conference.
Stevenson’s mother had reported her daughter missing on Nov. 21 and Victoria Police Chief Jeff Young said Tuesday that officers had “worked tirelessly to try and find her” before sadly locating a body they believed was Stevenson near Patriot Park.
An autopsy has been ordered at the Travis County Medical Examiner’s Office to sort out precisely how the young woman died, according to CBS affiliate KHOU. Meanwhile, police in Victoria are working on unlocking Stevenson’s password-protected cellphone to review her recent communications.
The young woman’s birthday was just a few days after she went missing. She would have been 21 on Nov. 24.
As her family reels from her death, police continue to investigate and they did reveal in limited detail to the Victoria Advocate that there is some connection between Stevenson and rideshare driver Kevin Bennetsen, 45.
Bennetsen killed himself during a traffic stop just one day after Stevenson was reported missing.
Officers in Victoria had attempted to interview him at his home on Nov. 22 and then later that day, pulled him over as part of an attempt to interview him a second time. During that traffic stop, Bennestsen shot himself to death, police said.
A married father with children, he worked as a rideshare driver for Uber and before that, he was as a substitute teacher in the Victoria School District as recently as 2022. Stevenson’s family told reporters that they believe Bennetsen was with their daughter when she vanished.
Police said the two went “mudding on [all-terrain vehicles],” before she went missing, according to KAU-TV.
Bennetsen’s death is currently being investigated by Texas Rangers.
After Bennetsen killed himself, authorities searched an area he was known to visit often called Yoakum. Police dogs and drones were used to survey the region but nothing was found of interest at the time, according to authorities.