Oklahoma authorities believe the 2011 slaying of a 19-year-old — whose butchered remains were found stuffed inside a duffel bag behind a grocery store — may have been videotaped, and they are offering up to $10,000 to anyone who can provide the gruesome footage, PEOPLE confirms.
While the video’s existence has never actually been verified, state investigators say, “people we’ve questioned” over the course of the investigation “have said they’ve seen the tape,” which purportedly shows the final moments of Carina Saunders’ life.
Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation special agent Steve Tanner declined to describe the tape’s alleged contents, but did tell PEOPLE that several individuals questioned by police insist “they have seen the video of when Carina was murdered.”
Tanner adds that there are others who’ve alluded to the tape’s existence during interrogations, saying they heard about the video from friends who claimed to have seen it.
“We really want to talk to people who have seen the tape with their own eyes,” agent Tanner says. “We are wanting to determine if somebody has a copy of it, and we want them to bring it to us so we can determine who was involved [in the killing].”
Saunders was reported missing by her mother on Sept. 28, 2011. Her dismembered body was found two weeks later in Bethany, Oklahoma. No motive has ever been publicly discussed.
Investigators believe Saunders was last seen alive on Oct. 8, 2011, when she got inside a red, dual-cab pickup truck at the Newcastle Casino about 30 minutes from where her body was later found, Tanner says.
A man seen getting out of the truck had tattoo sleeves on both of his arms, Tanner says.
Agents are trying to identify that man as well as a group of women who begged Saunders not to leave in the truck that night.
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In 2012, two suspects — Jimmy Massey and Luis Ruiz — were charged with killing Saunders after witnesses claimed the pair abducted the teen and held her against her will in an abandoned house before torturing and killing her.
The charges were later dropped against both Massey and Ruiz, for reasons not specified in court records, and the Bethany Police Department then transferred the investigation to state authorities.
Tanner says Saunders did not have a vehicle or a cell phone at the time of her disappearance, and she relied on others to give her rides and routinely borrowed cell phones to communicate.
Investigators want to speak to anyone who gave Saunders a ride or let her use their phone from Sept. 28, 2011, to when her body was discovered.
‘Not a Smoking Gun Situation’
Tanner tells PEOPLE the investigation remains “active” and that detectives are pursuing a number of leads developed over the course of their investigation, as well as 86 tips that have been phoned in.
But there are challenges – and, five years later, no convictions.
“This was not a smoking gun situation, where the police show up and there’s a guy holding a gun,” Tanner tells PEOPLE. “The investigation was initiated based on information that Carina was missing and days later, her remains were located behind a grocery story.
“There was no neighborhood to canvas and we have had to start pretty much from scratch. The Bethany police had the case initially, and asked us to take over it.”
“I wouldn’t even call this a cold case, since we have leads,” Tanner says. “It is just a continuing investigation that has been transferred between people and that has made it difficult to bring closure to the family. I can’t imagine what they are going through.”
At a news conference earlier this month asking the public for information, Saunders’ family (who could not be reached by PEOPLE) appeared along investigators.
“That’s a nightmare we live every day,” Saunders’ sister said, according to News9. “We don’t get to end it. And until somebody comes forward and has the humanity and kindness and want to help our family and our sister receive justice, we’ll never get that.”
“Five years is a long time not to be able to speak or hold or hug my daughter,” Saunders’ mother said. “And to the killers, know that we will never give up until justice is served.”
Anyone with information about Saunders’ death is urged to call 800-522-8017.