Samantha Josephson decided to call an Uber around 2 a.m. Friday after being separated from her roommates during a night out in Columbia, South Carolina, police said Saturday.
The 21-year-old University of South Carolina senior hopped into a black Chevy Impala, thinking it was her ride, Columbia Police Chief W.H. “Skip” Holbrook said during a news conference.
About 14 hours later, turkey hunters found her body in a field 90 miles from Columbia, he said.
“What we know now is that she had, in fact, summoned an Uber ride and was waiting for that Uber ride to come,” Holbrook said, citing surveillance footage. “We believe that she simply mistakenly got into this particular car thinking it was an Uber ride.”
Holbrook said he spoke with Josephson’s family prior to the press conference.
“Our hearts are broken, they’re broken. There is nothing tougher than to stand before a family and explain how a loved one was murdered,” he said. “It was gut wrenching, words really can’t describe what they’re going through.”
Nathaniel David Rowland, 24, has been arrested on charges of murder and kidnapping in connection with Josephson’s death, Holbrook said. He is being held in jail in Columbia. CNN has not determined if he has a lawyer yet.
Rowland also faces two misdemeanor charges for failing to stop on police command and for simple possession of marijuana, Columbia Police Department Public Information Officer Jennifer Timmons said.
Police are also questioning a female acquaintance of Rowland, who was in his vehicle at the time of his arrest, Timmons said.
Timmons said the acquaintance is cooperating with law enforcement and that there is no indication at this time that she was in the vehicle when Josephson got in the car. She does not face any charges from Columbia police at this time.