Bodies Found in Search for New York Couple Who Disappeared in Dominican Republic

The couple were missing for two weeks.

Bodies have been found in the search for a New York couple who vanished after traveling to the Dominican Republic, officials said. 

Orlando Moore, 43, and Portia Ravenelle, 32, traveled to the country for vacation and were supposed to return home on March 27, but they never made it.

National Police Col. Frank Felix Duran Mejia said a woman, who fits the description of Ravenelle, was found unconscious on the road to the airport in Santo Domingo on the day of the couple’s flight. She was transported to a hospital but died eight days later on April 4. 

"She had to die by herself," Francesca Figueroa, a family friend, told CNN. 

Police said the body of a man, now believed to be Moore, was found at sea, miles from where Ravenelle was found.

The body was in an advanced stage of decomposition and had a tattoo matching Moore's, police said.

The couple's rental car was also found in the ocean and authorities said they believe the vehicle went into the ocean on their way to the airport, although it is not clear how.

The couple reportedly rented a car for the drive from their hotel in Samana for a 2 a.m. flight and had been worried about the 2.5 hour drive, according to CNN. Surveillance footage confirmed Moore and Ravenelle never made it to the airport.

Cheryl Freeman, who met the couple on vacation, told the station that Ravenelle had not realized how far the airport was from their hotel and had said she was anxious about driving so late at night. 

Freeman also said Ravenelle told her the rental company warned the couple not to stop or open their windows for anyone late at night on the ride because people allegedly mug tourists on the route.

Freeman, who is from Nova Scotia, said after the couple left she sent them an email wishing them safe travels but never heard back.

Police said they are now working to fingerprint the bodies and are awaiting autopsy results.


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