Julia Dardar Identified by Coroner as Headless Torso Found in Louisiana Bus Freezer

A Louisiana coroner confirmed that a dismembered body found inside a bus freezer has been identified as missing woman Julia Dardar.

According to the Orleans Parish Coroner, Dardar's autopsy said she died from asphyxia due to manual strangulation and blunt force injuries to her head and neck, WDSU reported.

Last week, police found the dismembered body, now identified as Dardar, on a property belonging to Benjamin Beale.

Dardar, 36, was believed to be living with Beale at the time of her death. Her estranged husband reported her missing on December 23, just three days after a friend saw Beale driving Dardar's car alone, the NOLA.com news website reported.

New Orleans police were investigating the disappearance of Dardar when they went to question Beale at his home, NOLA.com added. Beale told investigators Dardar was moving out and that she may have taken her own life or overdosed.

After their interaction, police returned with a search warrant for Beale's home and found extension cords connected to a freezer located inside a bus parked in his backyard, WWL-TV reported.

According to court documents, police found a headless human torso inside the freezer with deep cuts on the arms and body that police believe were done post-mortem, according to WDSU.

Police say the head was located in the freezer along with flesh and fluid. Earlier reports said the body in the freezer was severely dismembered with several body parts wrapped in plastic. WDSU said police also found garbage bags, goggles and a face shield next to the freezer.

Officers nearby said they found an electric saw, "which appeared to have bits of flesh and fluid on the blade," according to WWL-TV.

Beale was charged with obstruction of justice after he was brought into the New Orleans Police Department for questioning and refused to provide a statement or answer questions about the dismembered body on his property.

Beale was booked at the Orleans Parish Justice Center on the obstruction charge and was later charged with second-degree murder. He's being held on a $1.4 million bond, according to WWL.

Dardar's husband, Micah Dardar, spoke at a news conference asking for Beale to remain in jail because he's dangerous.

"This guy has a pattern of luring women in and manipulating them and brainwashing them," Dardar was quoted by WVUE-TV. "There's people who want to speak out, but they're afraid. They're afraid of him getting out, they're afraid of the money that's involved behind this if he does get out, the people who are supporting him. People do have reason to be scared now since this has happened."

A separate arrest warrant was issued for Beale on Saturday in connection to a woman who said she was married to him in March 2021. According to the arrest warrant, Beale allegedly told the woman he was going to "cut [her] up into pieces," WVUE reported. The warrant said Beale called her the following day and threatened to "cut you up into pieces using my 'Dexter' table."

Headless Torso Found in Freezer Identified
A Louisiana coroner has identified the headless torso found inside a freezer in a bus as that of 36-year-old Julia Dardar. Above, police tape is pictured at a crime scene. Matt Rourke/AP Photo