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Sheriff’s Office refuses to provide information on Anna Scott murder

Date:

One year ago on Feb. 3, 2022, first responders were dispatched to what at first appeared to be a car fire on the I-580 overpass between Carson City and Reno. 

What they discovered was far more grisly. The body of 23-year-old Anna Marie Scott had been stuffed into the trunk of the vehicle prior to it being set on fire. Scott was a member of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribal community.

The first call came in just after 4 a.m. There were no witnesses to the crime, and to this date, no suspect has been arrested. 

Updates from the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, who have jurisdiction over the case, have been few and far between. Despite social media reports indicating it was Scott who had been found inside the trunk of the car, she was not officially identified until Feb. 7. 

It was then announced by the Washoe County medical examiner a month later that Scott had been fatally shot, officially naming her death as a homicide.

The sheriff’s office refuses to provide information about the case other than to encourage people to provide tips and to say Scott’s murder is still being investigated.

Here is information that has still not been released despite multiple requests: 

  • The movements of Scott in the days leading up to her murder
  • The make or model of the car she was found in 
  • Who, if anyone, the car was registered to
  • If the car was recorded by any business / road security cameras prior to entering the freeway 
  • If there are any suspects in the case, or potential suspect descriptions 
  • If it is known when Scott was killed or where 
  • If it is known how long Scott was dead prior to being placed in the vehicle 
  • What kind of bullet she was killed with and how many times she was shot

Multiple attempts to receive answers to these questions have not been returned by WCSO. However, this morning, after requesting answers to those questions, WCSO’s  Sgt. Kristin Vietti sent a press release with no new information.

“Detectives’ primary goal is to solve Scott’s homicide, and to bring justice to Scott and her loved ones,” the release said.

Scott’s case has received little attention given the brutality of the crime, and the public nature of her body being discovered. 

“What we’re asking for is accountability.”

In stark contrast, the nearby kidnapping and murder last year of 18-year-old Naomi Irion made international headlines. 

Despite their relatively similar ages, the similar time frame of the crimes, and the fact that they lived in the same region, the two cases were handled in a complete contrast to each other. 

Multiple law enforcement agencies worked together to locate Irion and arrest her suspected killer. Several press conferences were held, search parties were organized, and almost constant updates were provided to the press and the community at large. A suspect in Irion’s murder was charged within a month.

To date, there has never been a press conference held regarding Scott’s murder, and the last update with new information came a month after Scott was killed, indicating her death was classified as a homicide. 

A month after Scott’s murder, the American Indian Movement (AIM) of Northern Nevada held a prayer circle in front of the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, honoring Scott’s life and asking for accountability in her murder. 

“In the end, justice is in the hands of the creator,” said Ray Bacasegua Valdez, director of AIM during the prayer circle. “What we’re asking for is accountability.”

Scott’s murder highlights the ongoing plight of Indigenous women, who have murder rates ten times higher than any other ethnicity nationwide. In addition, 4 out of 5 indigenous women have reported experiencing violence at some point in their life. 

After the prayer circle ended, a Washoe County deputy approached Bacasegua Valdez as he was walking to his car amid posters of Scott’s face, held by friends and family. 

The deputy asked why AIM was there. 

When Bacasegua Valdez responded, “We’re here to ask for accountability in the murders,” the deputy asked, “What murders?” 

WCSO image of the vehicle where Anna Scott's body was found.
WCSO image of the vehicle where Anna Scott’s body was found.
Kelsey Penrose
Kelsey Penrose
Kelsey Penrose is a proud Native Nevadan whose work in journalism and publishing can be found throughout the Sierra region. She received degrees in English Literature and Anthropology from Arizona State University and is currently pursuing a Masters in Creative Writing with the University of Nevada, Reno at Lake Tahoe. She is an avid supporter of high desert agriculture and rescue dogs.

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