February 11th, 2009
09:33 AM ET

Crash survivor found dead

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/11/art.vert.nicole.peck.jpg caption="A photograph of Nicole Peck from the City of Atascadero press release." width=292 height=320]

Gabriel Falcon
AC360° Writer

Nicole Peck was behind the wheel on the night of January 15th. A man named Adam Mayfield was her passenger. No one else was inside the Dodge Neon when it veered off the road and crashed into a bridge that Thursday morning.

Peck and Mayfield survived the single-car accident. Police say they were not injured. They are convinced both walked away. But only Mayfield returned home. What happened to Nicole Peck?

Here's what we know: According to the Atascadero Police Department, Peck wasn't reported missing until January 22, a full seven days after she vanished. Working on leads, search and rescue teams fanned out near the bridge looking for the 29-year-old woman. On February 8 at 10:50 a.m., they made the grisly discovery. Peck's body was found in a shallow pool of water, just a few hundred yards from the scene of the collision.

Investigators say there were no tell-tale signs of trauma. So how did she die? Detectives are awaiting Wednesday's autopsy results to determine if Peck was the victim of foul play or not. Although authorities don't have a suspect, they do have a person of interest, Adam Mayfield. He was arrested on unrelated charges of possessing a dangerous weapon and violating parole. He is currently in jail.

Police are convinced Mayfield was the last person to see Peck before she disappeared. They are also certain he left the car with her on the night of January 15. Detectives say they have many more people to interview in the investigation.

Was Nicole Peck the victim of a homicide? Was it an accident? Or did she die from natural causes? The autopsy could shed light on this deadly mystery.

Post by:
Filed under: Crime & Punishment • Gabe Falcon
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. Andrew

    First thought is: were drugs and/or alchohol involved. That's where it all needs to begin.
    Drugs and/or Alchohol can lead to distortions in brain functionality and motor skills, possibly responsable for the car veering off the road. Resulting in possible internal injuries.
    Second Subject is the response time of the missing persons alert: If someone who is currently in jail for violating parole and possesion of a dangerous wepon was at the secen of the accident, clearly he was either intoxicated the the point of poor judgement, or had something to hide. (per his current position it's not hard to believe he had/has something to hide) For example the "Precious Doe" crime (which btw Charles Boyer, was crime involving a little African American girl and her neglectful mother and father and also one that CNN reported) the parents chose to cover their crime because they both had outstanding warrents for arrest. So something as small as a warrent could have set off this guys psychie or even possession, or parol violation. We wont really know if he was involved unless forensic evidence brings to light something such as marks on her body.

    February 12, 2009 at 11:04 am |
  2. willie

    if the passenger was never found.... suspicious savatoged is word ! ok but i realy think he did some thing

    February 12, 2009 at 10:40 am |
  3. Davis

    I think yhe passenger KILLED her before shae even went off the road

    SHUNSHINE what does that have to do with anything

    February 12, 2009 at 10:40 am |
  4. Dennis&willie

    DENNIS i hope who ever did this goes to prison WILLIE i hope who ever did this gets to take a trip to prison!!!!!!!!! oh and savatoged is a word !!!!!

    DENNIS im almost sure the passanger did something to that girl like druged her up like ****

    February 12, 2009 at 10:37 am |
  5. Davis

    What happened to the passenger because nobody can find him maybe after the driver wrecked the passenger must of been ok so him must of killed her and I hope they find the passenger for whatever he did and if he killed her I hope he gets put in jail

    February 12, 2009 at 10:36 am |
  6. LadyLuck83

    They were most likley lovers...They got into a serious verbal arguement that turned physical, she crashed the car as a result of the choas happening inside the car, they both walked away from the wreckage, he continued the arguement then drowned her cause he was afraid...of something.

    February 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  7. Sunshine


    February 12, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  8. Cameron

    They both were awake after the crash however they were still fighting he was so upset with her they walked together down the stream about 100 feet he became enraged and strangeled her.. then went home. this is what happened and it will all come out when autop is complete.

    February 12, 2009 at 9:04 am |
  9. Bush

    This happpened to Ted Kennedy also

    February 12, 2009 at 3:43 am |
  10. julia

    I went to junior high school with Nicole. Whatever happened to her is a shock to all that loved and cared about her. I wish I had the chance to reconnect with her after she moved away. She didn't deserve to live such a short filled life, but I know I will see her on the other side. I love you Nicole...p.s. our lip liner rocked back in the day!!!

    February 12, 2009 at 2:24 am |
  11. Sharon

    Too bad Ms. Peck did not go to the hospital for a 24 hour observation, it could of saved her life, and then Mr. Mayfield would not be in this predictament. Tragic for both of them is my opinion.

    February 12, 2009 at 1:30 am |
1 2