(WBIR) An East Tennessee mother may soon learn why her daughter disappeared more than two years ago.
Johnna Henson lives in Newport. Hundreds of miles away, her daughter, Kelli Bordeaux went to sing karaoke at Froggy Bottoms bar in Fayetteville, N.C. on April 13, 2012 and never returned. At the time of her disappearance, Bordeaux was a soldier at Fort Bragg.
Police said they believe the 23-year-old left the bar with a man she met there the week before. As it turns out, the man, Nicholas Michael Holbert, was identified as a registered sex offender, according to the Associated Press. Two days later, she was reported missing when she didn't report to work.
Now more than two years later, police in North Carolina said they believe they've found her remains. Going off a tip, detectives discovered what could be her body in a deeply wooded area about three to four miles from the bar, reported WNCN. Investigators said they believe the woman was dead when her body was dumped in the woods.
Officials sent the remains to the Raleigh Chief's Medical Examiner's Office for positive identification, according to WNCN.
Bordeaux's sister, Olivia Cox, told WNCN her mother stayed in contact with the Fayetteville Police Department every week since the 23-year-old went missing. Cox said possibly finding her sister's remains doesn't provide a lot of relief.
"I think my initial reaction was I was more mad than anything," Cox told WNCN. "I mean, why today of all days? What made you decide to say something? And on top of that, what made you wait so long? I literally have been through hell and back begging and pleading and praying, just trying to bring her home. . . I mean two years and one month of begging, and this is it?"
Lt. Todd Joyce, with Fayetteville police, said officers arrested Holbert, 27, and charged him with first-degree murder and first-degree kidnapping, according to our NBC affiliate WNCN. Fayetteville Police Chief Harold Medlock said in a news conference Holbert had been a person of interest in the case since Bordeaux disappeared.
Holbert told investigators he gave Bordeaux a ride home from the bar but dropped her off outside an apartment complex where she lived with her husband. The husband was visiting family in Florida that weekend.
Shortly after Bordeaux vanished, authorities arrested Holbert on an unrelated charge because he didn't live at the address he gave officials, which is a requirement for sex offenders. It was then he told officials that he had nothing to do with her disappearance. At the time Bordeaux went missing, he was living in a tent behind the Froggy Bottoms bar.
Nearly a year ago this month, the U.S. Army declared Bordeaux dead, which allowed her family to receive military death benefits.
Contributing the Associated Press, WNCN