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The body of a 31-year-old Tennessee mother was found in the trunk of a crashed car driven by her girlfriend in Michigan.

Eleni Kassa was reported missing on 18 November when she didn’t pick up her daughter at school the previous day, WKRN reported.

Investigators say Ms. Kassa vanished after a “possible domestic violence incident” in connection to her girlfriend Dominique Hardwick, 36.

The mother’s phone and car were found at her apartment, and she was thought to be riding with Ms. Hardwick in her Dodge Charger.

Dearborn, Michigan, police officers found the Charger on Sunday 27 November, Michigan State Police said.

When police tried to pull over the car, the driver sped off and collided with a home.

Police were issuing warnings to the driver when a gunshot was heard. The driver was identified as Ms. Hardwick and she was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash from a self-inflicted gunshot, the Kansas City Star reported.

Police located Ms. Kassa dead in the trunk of the vehicle. She had “trauma that was not a result from the crash” police said, but the cause of death remains unclear.

A passenger in the front seat was taken to the hospital. Her identity hasn’t been made public but police have said that she has been questioned regarding the death of Ms. Kassa.  last week and that his sister was “a wonderful mother, and she is a wonderful sister, and she’s just everybody’s favorite person”.

As of Wednesday morning, a GoFundMe fundraiser for the family had raised $38,085 out of a goal of $100,000.

Ms. Kassa was described on the page as a “loving sister, niece, aunt, and mother of a wonderful 6-year-old daughter, who now has to navigate life without her mother”.

“Eleni also lost her parents when she was 4 years old, she and her siblings were raised by their grandmother, they all grew up as a very close family unit,” Ms. Kassa’s siblings wrote. “They have survived multiple adversities as a family, but never in our worst nightmare could we have imagined that this could happen to her of all people.”

“Most of the family has flown to Tennessee, to coordinate with police and family on the next steps, and raising the funds to fly her body back to Eritrea for funeral arrangements,” they added.

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