Welfare check leads police to find woman's body in trash truck in Woodbridge; suspect in custody

A suspect is in custody after the body of a northern Virginia mother was found in a trash truck over the weekend.

It started as a welfare check in Woodbridge last week. 

Relatives of the victim, 30-year-old Tatyana Cooks, were concerned about her. So, on Thursday, police conducted a welfare check at her home just off of Stevenson Court.

Family members told police that Cooks didn’t pick her child up from daycare that evening, which was very unusual for her.

Detectives were able to enter the home and that’s when they realized some of her personal belongings were still in the house, but her car wasn’t. Her car was later spotted in Hampton Roads, being driven by an acquaintance who we now know is a suspect 28-year-old Brendon White.

White was arrested by Newport News police later that day and FOX 5 is told he will be brought back to Prince William County.

RELATED: Mother killed in Prince William County home, body found in trash truck: police

The investigation continued into Friday morning when police noticed that the trash had just been collected, which was a concern for them since they suspected foul play.

"They were concerned about evidence being in that truck. They immediately secured the truck and unfortunately, our victim was found deceased inside," said Lieutenant Jonathan Perok with the Prince William County Police. "There is not a time limit to report a family member missing and just. If you are concerned over the welfare of a loved one, family member, co-worker friend, please reach out to police as soon as possible. The family did that in this case and we credit them for that. It’s an unfortunate outcome but they recognized a concern and reached out to police right away."

Again, this is not the outcome that anyone wants but police say it serves as a reminder not to wait if you believe a friend or family member is missing.

FOX 5 did ask police about the relationship between Cooks and White. They say they were known to each other but not together.

No additional information has been released at this time.