Former Ottawa County woman found dead in California

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – A former Ottawa County woman was found dead in southern California over the weekend, the victim of an apparent homicide.

Wendi Miller, 48, was found dead in a condominium in Newport Beach Sunday, according to the KTLA – TV.  She was Wendi Carpenter when she was living in Holland, Michigan.

In July of 2011, FOX 17 reported that Carpenter was wanted for parental kidnapping after skipping a parental exchange for her two children, who were then aged 11 and 10, with her ex-husband who lived in Colorado Springs. Her husband at the time had told FOX 17 that she had concerns about handing her children back to her ex-husband.  In October of 2011, criminal charges against Carpenter were dropped after she was arrested in Colorado.

KTLA reports that Carpenter, now Miller, was found dead Sunday evening along with the body of Darren Partch, 38, a former minor league hockey player.  Newport Beach Police say that they are conducting an active homicide investigation for the deaths of Miller and Partch.

Miller was the chief executive for Wings for Justice, a California nonprofit that states as their mission to “protect children in the family court system and advocate for change.” One of the videos on the Wings of Justice page tells Miller’s story from when she was in Ottawa County and kept away from her children while trying to protect them from her ex-husband, who was a pastor at the time.

Police say that there were no signs of forced entry at the condominium.  Miller was last seen about 1:45 a.m. Saturday at a Laguna Beach bar.  Family became concerned when she did not show up to Easter festivities.

We’ll have more details when they become available.

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