Teens find suitcase with missing Plano woman’s body, husband charged with tampering with physical evidence

Teenagers found a suitcase along Lewisville Lake and opened it to find Sarah Dudley's body. Karlton has since been charged with tampering.

Plano resident 37-year-old Karlton Dudley was arrested Wednesday, June 28 for corpse abuse linked to the death of his wife, 32-year-old Sarah Dudley. Here’s what we now know of the timeline.

Karlton was previously arrested in Frisco for aggravated sexual assault of a child, and had to wear an ankle monitor that tracked his location.

Saturday, June 24 – Karlton and Sarah spend time together before Karlton went to a neighbor’s apartment to check on their cat. When he returned to their place at 4:00 p.m., Sarah was gone. Karlton said Sarah left to walk to her workplace, RA Sushi in Plano, but coworkers say she never made it to her shift. 

Karlton then went to Lewisville Lake in Hidden Cove Park to go kayaking. However, he later told police that his kayak would not inflate, so instead, he took a walk around the lake. This turned out to be inaccurate, as the information from his ankle monitor shows movement in the lake.

Later that evening, Karlton reported Sarah to be a missing person with the Plano Police Department, telling police that both Sarah and a suitcase were missing. Officers first responded to his residence at 10:49 p.m., according to lead detective Jerry Minton.

“He claimed he couldn’t get his kayak to blow up, it’s a soft kayak, so he just stayed at the marina for a while and walked around,” said Minton. “[The data from the ankle monitor showed] that he was not just on the shore; he was out on the water somewhere.” 

Monday, June 26 – A small group of teens find a suitcase in Lewisville Lake and open it, revealing Sarah’s then-unidentified body at 7 p.m. They called The Colony Police Department who responded, later discovering that the suitcase matched the description of the one missing from the apartment. 

Wednesday, June 28 – Sarah’s missing person records are matched with the body in the lake. It is confirmed that the body is Sarah.  Karlton was arrested for abuse of a corpse without legal authority.

Presently, the autopsy is inconclusive and Sarah’s official cause of death is unknown. He was also charged on July 11 with fabricating/tampering of physical evidence with intent to impair a human corpse.

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