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Murder Suspect Arrested In Missing Woman Case

By Lauren DiSpirito

AURORA, Colo. (CBS4) - The man Aurora police believe killed a missing woman was arrested on Friday afternoon.

queen ashby murder case (2)
(credit: CBS)

On Thursday, Aurora police named Shawrae Butler, 21, as the suspect in the murder of Queen Ashby. He was arrested at 12:45 p.m. in the 4100 Block of South Mobile Way and remained in police custody at the Aurora Detention Center on Friday evening.

shawrae butler mug
Shawrae Butler (credit: Aurora Police)

Ashby, 20, was reportedly murdered in Aurora and had been missing for several weeks before a body, found in Clear Creek County on April 8, was determined to be that of Ashby a few weeks later. A friend who had been with Ashby before she died turned up safe.

Ashby's mother, Tiffiany Ryals, called word of Butler's arrest "a relief."

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Queen Ashby (credit: CBS)

While she says the weeks since Queen's disappearance and death have been horrible, knowing her daughter was loved by so many people eases her pain.

"I cried definite tears of joy," Ryals said. "She's going to get justice."

queen ashby murder case (1)
(credit: CBS)

Police have released few details as to how Ashby was killed or whether they've discovered a motive in the case. Family and friends say they do not know Butler, or, whether Ashby knew him.

In high school, Ashby was a member of the cheerleading squad. Her teammates say Ashby was like a mother figure to them, always there to cheer them up and comfort them.

(credit: CBS)

"We can do nothing but remember and love her," one friend who attended the vigil said.

"It's hard to accept that she's gone," said former teammate, Liz Aguilar Dominguez.

At the vigil, people used markers to write messages to Ashby on white balloons before gathering in a circle to pray together and released them.

(credit: CBS)

A funeral for Ashby is scheduled for May 27. Butler is facing possible murder charges.

Ryals says she has established the Queen Ashby Benefit Memorial fund at Wells Fargo and is accepting donations to help cover funeral expenses and save for her granddaughter's future college tuition.

(credit: CBS)

Lauren DiSpirito reports for CBS4 News at 10 p.m. She covers breaking news and feature stories along Colorado's Front Range. Follow her on Twitter @CBS4Lauren. Share your story ideas with her here.

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