UPDATE: DNA tests confirm the identity of the burned body that was found in Lufkin

Witness: Burned truck in Lufkin "was just toasted," body inside still unidentified

LUFKIN (KYTX) - The burned body that was found in a truck in Lufkin was identified today.

DNA testing confirmed that Efren Mora Elizondo, 47, of Lufkin, the vehicle owner,  was the victim of the August 14 murder/vehicle fire. 


A passing driver noticed a burning truck that was partially hidden off South Medford Drive Wednesday morning. Investigators were on the scene around 1 a.m. when they realized there was a dead body inside the truck.

As of Wednesday evening, Lufkin Police were not sure whether the person who died was a man or a woman, but they had identified the truck and who it belongs to.

When people got to work at Twin Cities Housing on Wednesday, word of a burned out truck behind the lot spread quickly.

"It was just toasted. I mean there was nothing left at all. I mean you couldn't even tell what color the vehicle was to begin with," Anthony Miller said. "Something you would not ever imagine seeing."

Miller snapped photos of what appeared to be an older Ford F-150 before it was hauled away.

As investigators took measurements and catalogued evidence, Miller realized what happened over night was worse than he had thought.

"The cop walked up and was picking up the caution tape after they were starting to haul the truck off and [my friend] asked what all happened and if it was just the truck and [the officer] said 'no, there was a body in there.'"

Originally police were not able to figure out who the truck belonged to. Late Wednesday afternoon they got a break.

"We were assisted by DPS in locating other VINs on the vehicle and that owner has been identified and that family has been contacted but that's all I can say about that at this point," Lufkin Police Detective J.B. Smith said.

Smith did not say whether investigators think foul play was involved.

"It's a shame to know that in our own back yards, in our own workplaces, we've got to deal with crime scenes," Miller said. "People getting killed. I mean when's it going to stop?"

Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace Judge Billy Ball ordered an autopsy. The body was sent to Beaumont in hopes of DNA testing revealing its identity.

Lufkin Police don't expect to get the autopsy results for several weeks.

If you know anything about what happened, call Crime Stoppers of Lufkin at (936) 639-TIPS to give an anonymous tip.


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