After months of waiting on DNA test results of remains found in Coachella in June, Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco confirms the they are a match for Jonathan Darling Reynoso and Audrey Moran. The couple went missing in May of 2017.
“We did get those results back and it was positive for both of them,” said Bianco.
He says these results will play a key role in bringing the six charged with their murders to justice, “One of the hardest things to do is prosecute a homicide without a body because the defense is going to say that they’re really not even dead they’re just missing voluntarily … we’re very, very confident the family will get justice.”
Bianco says the department recently bought critical tools to help them speed up the process of identification that will give them results in under two hours. While their department was considering the purchase before, Bianco says this case brought to light the need for in house DNA testing. Among the many benefits, he said one of the most important ones is families not having to wait so long for preliminary results.
He says his investigators worked tirelessly on this case conducting hundreds of interviews and serving dozens of search warrants, “Our investigators that worked on this worked around the clock, I mean this something that bothers them too and they want this finished and they want it completed in a successful way for justice for the family,” he says.
He knows this is not the end but the beginning of a long journey for the families, “I wish you strength and pray for your strength to get through it.”
The families of Jonathan and Audrey took to social media to share the news with the community that has stood by them for years.
Audrey’s mother, Maria Moran, shared her grief and toll this long journey has taken, “Our Audrey has been found,” the post reads, ending with a prayer they both rest in peace, “Let perpetual light shine upon them.”
Jonathan’s mother, Mayra Torres Taylor, shared her pain saying she will never have closure but she hopes to find peace. She ends the post with thanking the sheriff’s department who kept their promise of bringing them home, ending with, “Then again, they have always been home.”