Man charged after fiancé’s body found dismembered and wrapped in plastic

In a chilling case from California, a woman’s dismembered body was found along a shoreline this past summer. The victim, 27-year-old Rachel Elizabeth Imani Buckner, was allegedly murdered by her fiancé, 42-year-old Joseph C. Roberts, who was arrested and charged with her murder this week, as per the Alameda Police Department.

Buckner’s mutilated remains were discovered on July 20, shockingly wrapped in plastic and bound with duct tape. Her head, hands, and feet had been gruesomely severed from her body and remained missing. The autopsy confirmed that Buckner’s death was a result of homicide.

The victim was identified in late August after processing DNA evidence. A deep dive into Roberts’ phone records revealed that the last communication between him and Buckner’s phone occurred on July 13. Interestingly, he had been in contact with at least three other women since then, according to authorities.

Further probing revealed that Roberts had been using Buckner’s phone and car in the weeks following her death, as stated by Alameda Police Detective Robert Hansen. Buckner and Roberts had been in a long-term relationship and lived together in the suburb of Pleasanton. Both were previously arrested in 2022 for allegedly breaking into Buckner’s mother’s home and assaulting her family members.

Roberts never reported Buckner missing at any point during the investigation. His DNA was found on the tape used to wrap her body, indicating his involvement in her death, dismemberment, and the subsequent attempt to conceal her body in plastic garbage bags, according to Hansen’s report. Roberts is currently facing charges of murder, circumstance in aggravation, and special allegation of great bodily injury, as per jail records.