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Last updated on Wednesday, February 22, 2012
(KOKOMO) - The boyfriend of Kokomo woman who’s been missing since July has admitted to police he beat her to death with a hammer and threw her body in the trash, prosecutors said.
Travis Funke, 34, of Kokomo, was charged Tuesday with one count of voluntary manslaughter in the death of Kelly Armstrong, 28.
Armstrong's family reported her missing in September after she hadn't been heard from in months and they said Funke, her live-in boyfriend, began acting evasive.
Shortly after police talked with Funke, he cut off his home detention monitor and tried to commit suicide, according to a probable cause affidavit.
While in jail on charges related to cutting his anklet, he told his cellmate that he had killed Armstrong with a hammer and that he was concerned about evidence that could still be in the couple's mobile home.
When police searched the home, they found a hammer covered with blood and several large blood stains on the carpet, furniture and walls, according to the affidavit.
Using DNA collected from Armstrong's parents, a lab confirmed that the blood was a 99.9 percent match for Armstrong.
When investigators interviewed Funke again in January, he admitted to killing Armstrong in the couple's trailer on July 8, police said.
He told investigators that Armstrong threatened him with a hammer during a fight, and that he took it from her and beat her repeatedly, according to the affidavit.
Funke said he then took a nap and thought the beating had been a dream until he awoke to find Armstrong dead on the floor, according to the affidavit.
Funke said he put Armstrong's body in a trash bin, which was picked up a short time later, and tried to clean up the blood with bleach.
Police tracked the trash to the Wabash Valley Landfill, where they spent six days searching through 6,000 tons of trash. No remains were found.
Family members said they believed from the beginning that Funke was involved with Armstrong's disappearance.
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