Butler Couple persons of Interest

The Kleberg County Sheriff's Office released this photo of two persons of interest in the deaths of James and Michelle Butler. 

The Kleberg County Sheriff’s Office has released a photograph of two persons of interest in the deaths of James and Michelle Butler, a couple whose bodies were discovered in a shallow grave on Padre Island in Kleberg County.

KCSO officials said they are seeking the public’s help in identifying the man and woman in the picture released by the KCSO at a news conference on Monday morning.

KCSO Lt. David Mendoza said the Butler’s silver 2018 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 pickup truck with a New Hampshire license plate was last seen crossing the southern border into Mexico.

The man and woman were photographed inside the vehicle, and it is not known if there were additional passengers inside the vehicle, Mendoza said.

The man and woman appear to have tattoos, and the man has gauged ears.

Kleberg and Kenedy Counties District Attorney John T. Hubert said that at the current point in the investigation, “We just don't have enough evidence to show that they are even our suspects in the murder."

"At this point they're just people we want to identify and talk to," Hubert added.

Kleberg County Sheriff Richard Kirkpatrick said that any additional information will not be released at this time as the investigation is ongoing, and the KCSO is using “all of its resources.”

KCSO officials said the Butlers had last been seen at the Padre Balli Park around noon on Oct. 14.

The couple’s RV and truck were then parked near Beach Marker 263 on Padre Island, according to a Facebook post by Michelle Butler on Oct. 15, Mendoza said.

Friends of the couple reportedly told investigators the two were traveling to Fort Lauderdale, Fla. and were scheduled to arrive there Nov. 20.

The couple was reported missing by family members on Oct. 16, and the bodies were discovered on Oct. 27.

The cause of death for the Butlers will not be released at this time and there are no known motives for their murder, KCSO officials said.

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