Man Charged With Aggravated Murder in the Death of Mackenzie Lueck

June 29, 2019 Updated: June 29, 2019

Authorities have arrested and charged a Salt Lake City man with aggravated murder in the death of missing university student Mackenzie Lueck.

Ayoola Ajayi, 31, was taken into custody Friday Morning after an investigation by police uncovered charred female remains and items belonging to Lueck that had been buried in the suspect’s backyard.

Neighbors told police that Ajayi had been burning something in his backyard using gasoline around the day of June 17, when Lueck disappeared, reported Fox News.

Following the arrest, Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown told the media “After an exhaustive week of investigation, we are filing charges of aggravated murder, aggravated kidnapping, obstruction of justice and desecration of a body in the homicide of Mackenzie Lueck.”

“Salt Lake City is a tight-knit, caring, family-oriented community and I hope we can all work together to prevent this from ever happening again.”

 Lueck Goes Missing

According to the Gephardt Daily, the last known video footage of the 32-year-old university student was taken by Salt Lake City International Aiport surveillance.

The footage shows Lueck in the airport after exiting a flight that landed at 1:35 a.m. on June 17, from Southern California, where she is said to have been attending a funeral for her maternal grandmother.

At 2:42 a.m. Lueck left the airport in a Lyft car.

Around 3 a.m on June 17, the Lyft driver dropped her off at Hatch Park in Salt Lake City, where she got into the vehicle of an unidentified individual.

After failing to appear for a midterm exam at the University of Utah on June 20, Lueck was reported missing.

Ajayi’s Arrest

On Friday, a SWAT team was dispatched to the 1028 W. Temple apartment complex where Ajayi was said to be staying.

1028 W. Temple SLC
1028 W. Temple SLC (Screenshot via Google Maps)

Upon arrival, the suspect was handcuffed and taken into custody where he was charged with aggravated murder.

Court records obtained by Gephardt Daily indicate that in 2016, prior to getting evicted, Ajayi lived with two roommates in an apartment about a block away from the Hatch Park area where he picked up Lueck the morning she disappeared.

The records also state that “In an interview with Ayoola he admitted to having text conversations with Mackenzie on June 16, 2019 at approximately 1800 hours (6 p.m.), but nothing after this time.

“Ayoola stated that he did not know what Mackenzie looked like and denied having seen a photo or online profile of Mackenzie, despite investigations that the means of which he communicated with her displayed several photos of her and her profile photo.

“Ayoola denied any personal contact with Mackenzie or meeting with her at any time. Investigations of Ayoola’s and Mackenzie’s phone records show the location of Mackenzie’s and Ayoola’s phones to be at the location of Hatch Park within less than a minute of each other and at the same time of Mackenzie’s phone no longer receiving any further data or location on June 17, 2019 at approximately 0300 hours (3 a.m.)”

Ajayi is currently being held without bail.

Ajayi Tried to Install a Secret Soundproof Room in His Basement

In an interview with Valley News Live, contractor Brian Wolf claims he was asked by Ajayi to build him a secret soundproof room in the basement of his house.

“He just said that his girlfriend was coming into town and he needed to get it done before she got there because she was a Mormon girl,” Wolf said. “She didn’t know he drank, so he wanted to hide the alcohol from her, and I was like, ‘well why do you need it to be soundproof?’ I told a lot of people that I felt like something weird was going on over (there) and it turns out there obviously was.”

More information on Ajayi

The Chicago Tribune reported that, according to Ajayi’s LinkedIN page, he previously worked in the field of information technology for companies like Dell and Goldman Sachs. Both companies later confirmed his employment.

Ajayi is also alleged to have been pursuing a modeling career with an active profile on modelmanagement.com.

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