Dawn Fital, 45, had been missing since Monday. Her ex-husband and boyfriend, Gregory Noack, 44, is charged with her murder. Investigators say he led them to her body.
Police found Fital's body in a large suitcase submerged in four feet of water behind a Toys R Us. Police say her ankles, mouth and wrist were bound with duct tape. Bricks and stones were used to weigh down the suitcase. She was stuffed inside, in the fetal position.
Fital was last seen in Pittsfield Township, Michigan, west of Detroit. Police scoured the complex where she shared an apartment with Noack. Police in Merrillville, Ind., arrested him early Wednesday morning after someone reported a suspicious person lurking behind the toy store. He was driving Fital's car.
"Unexpected. Knowing her, not knowing her, it's just tragic," said Santana Ybarra, Fital's neighbor.
Fital is being remembered with more than 100 posts on Facebook. Her daughter posted one saying, "Mom I miss you so much! [I] can't even find the words to express the severity of our heartbreak. I feel lifeless without you."
Others are remembering the 45-year-old woman for her skills on the billiards table. She traveled the country competing in pool tournaments.
Police in Michigan say they have been called to Fital's apartment one other time for domestic problems in recent months.
Noack is in the Lake County, Ind. He is scheduled for a hearing Friday morning to determine when he will be extradited back to Michigan to face the murder charge.
A coroner will perform an autopsy this weekend to determine how she died.