Human Remains Found amid Search for Lauren Cho, N.J. Woman Who Has Been Missing Since June

·2 min read
Lauren Cho
Lauren Cho

Morongo Basin Sheriff's Department Lauren Cho

As the search continues for Lauren Cho, the 31-year-old woman who has been missing since June, authorities discovered human remains near where she was last seen in California.

On Sunday, the Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said they found "unidentified human remains" in "the rugged terrain of the open desert of Yucca Valley."

"The remains were transported to the San Bernardino County Coroner's Division where staff will work to identify the remains and determine a cause of death. The identification process could take several weeks," they wrote on Facebook, noting that additional information will not be released until the remains have been positively identified.

Cho's sister told CNN their "family is just holding our collective breaths."

"We so badly desire answers, but already feel the heartbreak of what the answer could be," she added.

Lauren Cho
Lauren Cho

Morongo Basin Sheriff's Department Lauren Cho

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Cho was last seen around 5:10 p.m. on Saturday, June 28, when she was walking away from the Yucca Valley home where she had been staying, according to the Morongo Basin Sheriff's Department.

Cho's friend Cody Orell previously told the Hi-Desert Star that Cho planned on meeting someone that Sunday, but "wasn't saying who."

"I didn't pry into it then, but of course now I wish…." said Orell, who was staying with Cho on a friend's property. The pair had previously driven to California from New Jersey on a tour bus.

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According to Orell, Cho quit her job as a music teacher in New Jersey to move out west to "follow her dreams." He said that Cho had just purchased an old school bus to convert into a food truck.

"She was in the middle of working on her bus," Orell said. "The day she went missing she texted me earlier asking for some help on it."

Per CNN, Cho's ex-boyfriend, who "indicated she was suffering from mental distress," reported her missing about three hours after her disappearance.

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Authorities describe Cho as a 5-foot-3 Asian woman with black hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a yellow T-shirt and jean shorts.

Those who may have information on Cho are urged to contact Detective Edward Hernandez or Sergeant Justin Giles at (909) 387-3589, or the We-Tip hotline at 800-78-CRIME (27463).