Sheriff's office: Tip led to finding missing Summerville woman's body

Ashley Pegram and Edward Bonilla

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- The body found Saturday in a wooded area near Harleyville was identified Sunday afternoon as Ashley Pegram, the missing Summerville woman. Pegram's cause of death is listed as homicidal violence.

Dorchester County Sheriff's deputies said on Monday a tip led them to Harleyville for the search. It took two days of searching and the use of special cadaver dogs, but officials found Pegram's body had been buried in a wooded area.

According to Dorchester County Coroner Chris Nisbet, an autopsy was done Sunday morning at Medical University Hospital that confirmed the identity.

"The autopsy revealed many interesting facts, that lead me to rule the cause of death for the person as homicidal violence, with the manner of death being a homicide," Nisbet said in a release.

Pegram has been missing since April 4. Family members said shortly after the disappearance they expected she had been killed.

Dorchester County deputies earlier this month charged 30-year-old Edward Bonilla. He was initially charged with obstruction in the case and held on a $400,000 bond. The murder charge came while he waited in jail.

Pegram's sister, Brandy Chance, said in interviews shortly after reporting Pegram missing that t Pegram left their Summerville home at 9:18 p.m. on April 3 to go out on a date with a man she met on the dating app Meet Me.

Chance said she was able to review messages between Pegram and the man on Meet Me and the messaging app Kik using a cell phone they shared. Chance told deputies she called the man who told her that Pegram was heavily intoxicated and that he couldn't handle her so he kicked her out of his car about a midnight at a Kangaroo on Main Street.

Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Andy Martin at the Dorchester County Sheriff's Office at (843) 832-0300.

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