UPDATED January 4 from Roanoke County Police: Police have received confirmation from the Medical Examiner’s Office that the body recovered Saturday afternoon off of Bent Mountain Road is that of Sarabeth Rose Hammond. The cause of death is listed as blunt force trauma to the head. Police believe speed was a factor in the accident. Hammond was traveling in the northbound lane and in a sharp curve of the road when her vehicle struck a landscaping wall in front of a home in the 9200 block of Bent Mountain Road. The vehicle then went over a steep hillside. A caretaker of the home that is vacant and up for sale stopped by the home Saturday afternoon and noticed damage to the wall and debris in the yard. Upon further inspection, he spotted the vehicle nearly 150 yards down the heavily wooded slope behind the home. He called dispatch at 2:01 p.m. Hammond was ejected from the vehicle and found 50 yards away from it. Roanoke County Fire & Rescue personnel recovered Hammond at 3:55 p.m. and the vehicle at 6:00 p.m.
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UPDATED SATURDAY PM: Roanoke County Police report a Hyundai matching the description of Sarabeth Hammond’s vehicle was found off Bent Mountain Road and a body matching her description was found nearby. Police do not believe foul play is involved.
PREVIOUSLY: Roanoke County Police, Virginia State Police and Roanoke County Fire & Rescue reported this afternoon that they would conduct a search of the Bent Mountain area in Roanoke County as they look for missing teen Sarabeth Hammond – that after cell phone analysis the agencies helped define a two-mile search area across Bent Mountain. A county police department spokesperson now says however that no trace of Hammond was found during that search. Hammond was last seen driving a White 20-15 Hyundai Elantra with New York license plates. She is 5’4 tall with blonde hair and hazel eyes.