In December of 2019, six months after Nikki Kuhnhausen went missing, a man picking bear-grass on a local mountain range discovered human remains. He found a skull off a Forest Service road on Larch Mountain, about an hour outside of Vancouver, Washington. Deputies and search and rescue crews were dispatched to the scene, where they recovered dozens of pieces of evidence, including clothing, hair extensions, a cell phone charging cord and several human bones.
The remains were sent to the medical examiner’s office and were positively identified as belonging to Nikki Kuhnhausen. Once investigators notified Nikki’s family of the discovery, police held a press conference to announce the news to the public. Investigators announced the discovery of Nikki’s remains, and revealed that she had been strangled.
Police were also working to bring Nikki’s killer to justice. They had one person of interest: a 25-year-old construction worker named David Bodganov, the same man who police had questioned two months prior. Detectives enlisted the help of a special team within the FBI to analyze Bogdanov’s cell phone records and cell location history. They were able to see that Bogdanov’s phone had traveled to Larch Mountain the morning Nikki disappeared, in the same area where her remains were discovered. On December 17th, 2019, detectives arrested and charged David Bogdanov with Nikki’s murder.
Listen to episode three of Should Be Alive: