MOAB, Utah (NewsNation Now) — The Gabby Petito case shined a spotlight on the unsolved slaying of newlyweds Crystal Turner and Kylen Schulte. The couple was killed around the same time Petito and Brian Laundrie were in the Moab area.
Cindy Sue Hunter discovered the newlyweds’ bodies near a campsite outside the small tourist town.
“I saw a body in the water and I immediately turned away,” Hunter, a family friend, told NewsNation. “I didn’t want to know that that was a body there. I wanted to be wrong.”
The pair, who lived at the wilderness campsite, had previously told friends a guy camping nearby gave them the creeps.
“They had told their friends at the bar — this is my understanding, it could be different — that there was a creepy dude, a creeper dude, and he was too close,” Hunter said.
The night of Aug. 13, the couple went to Woody’s Tavern. They then visited with friends who begged them not to go back to the campsite. It’s the last time they were seen alive.
“I think they thought they were safe,” Hunter said. “They knew they needed to move. They weren’t comfortable, even though they made the offhanded comment that if they were murdered, it was him. I don’t think they ever thought that was going to happen or I don’t think they would’ve went back up there.”
When days went by with no word from them, Kylen’s dad, who lives out of state, called Hunter asking if she could help.
“I drove around for almost five hours, stopping people, showing them pictures, asking if they’ve seen them, telling them, ‘Please if you see them, this car, the girls, call the police,’” Hunter said.
She eventually spotted the couple’s car before making the horrifying discovery.
A newly released affidavit for a search warrant reveals the women were sexually assaulted and shot multiple times.
After two months, Hunter is frustrated that more information has not been released.
“We know nothing,” Hunter said. “They told us Brian Laundrie is not involved. They’ve told us that we’re safe. But they don’t tell us why. None of us feel safe.”
Hunter is also still mourning the loss of her friends.
“They just lived life to the fullest,” Hunter said. “Anytime you saw them, they were just happy, friendly and warm and they just made you feel good.”
The Grand County Sheriff’s Office, the Utah State Bureau of Investigations and the FBI are working on the case. A private investigator is also looking into the couple’s slaying.
The Moab Police Department is not involved in the investigation, but Assistant Chief Braydon Palmer admits it’s left residents on edge.
“I think it’s safe to say that the community is concerned,” Palmer said.
Anyone with information related to the case is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 435-259-8115.