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Ex-boyfriend charged with murder in death of missing pregnant Parkland woman

Colin Dudley, 37, has been charged with murder in the first degree and is being held in the Pierce County Jail on $2 million bail.

TACOMA, Wash. — The ex-boyfriend of a Pierce County woman who was reported missing in late August has been charged with murder in connection with her death. 

Colin Dudley, 37, appeared in court Friday and was charged with murder in the first degree. He is being held in the Pierce County Jail on $2 million bail, according to jail records

Kassanndra Cantrell, 33, was reported missing on Aug. 27 after she missed a doctor's appointment the day before. Her vehicle was found abandoned near the Tacoma Dome the day after she was reported missing.  

Detectives found a body believed to be that of Cantrell's on Sept. 22. The remains were found wrapped and disposed of over a steep hillside along Chambers Creek Road W. in Pierce County, sheriff officials said. 

An autopsy by the Pierce County Medical Examiner confirmed the identity of the remains to be Cantrell through dental records, according to court documents released Friday. 

The court documents revealed Cantrell discovered she was pregnant in July and told her doctors Dudley was the father. However, Dudley denied having any recent relationship with Cantrell to detectives, and said there was "no way" he was the father. He said they had dated several years ago.

RELATED: Ex-boyfriend held without bail after Pierce County detectives find body believed to be missing pregnant woman

Court documents said Cantrell's remains were too decomposed for experts to determine if she was pregnant or not during the autopsy, but her family, friends and medical records confirmed that she was pregnant.

Detectives obtained Cantrell and Dudley's cell phone records, which confirmed Dudley did have contact with Cantrell repeatedly as far back as February of this year. They also communicated on the morning of Aug. 25, which is when Cantrell was last seen alive. 

The cell phone records showed Cantrell traveled from her house to Dudley's residence in the early morning hours on Aug. 25. Data from both of their phones put them at the same approximate location for several hours, court documents said. Later that morning, the location data showed Cantrell's phone traveled to a location consistent with where her vehicle was found, and later it traveled to the Owen Beach area of Point Defiance Park, which was Cantrell's phone's last known location. 

Law enforcement dive teams later recovered Cantrell's phone from the waters near Owen Beach. 

Surveillance cameras also helped detectives pinpoint Dudley's whereabouts on Aug. 25, which showed a truck believed to be his leaving the Owen Beach area just after 1 p.m. During this time, Dudley's phone was off, court documents said, but it was later turned back on at about 1:30 p.m. and showed him back at his home. 

On Sept. 1, detectives searched Dudley's home and found blood believed to be that of Cantrell's in various areas of the basement, court documents said. 

On Sept. 22, detectives learned that the location data had been obtained from Dudley's truck that showed the truck traveled to a location near the Chambers Bay treatment plant at 6 a.m. on Aug. 26. Based upon that new information, detectives searched that area and found Cantrell's remains that afternoon. 

Dudley was arrested and booked into jail later that day. 

RELATED: FBI joins search for missing pregnant Pierce County woman