MENDOCINO COUNTY (CBS SF) – Authorities in Mendocino County have launched a homicide investigation after two people who were reported missing earlier this month were found dead in a remote area near Covelo last week.

The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office confirmed Monday that the bodies were of 34-year-old Kyle James McCartney and 48-year-old Traci Lynn Bland, both from Covelo.

Deputies said they were notified about an assault and possible kidnapping of McCartney and Bland on the afternoon of November 19. The person who reported the incident to deputies said he was taken to a location on Oak Lane by McCartney and Bland, but when they arrived, at least four suspects attacked and assaulted the pair. The eyewitness was able to escape.

The bodies of Traci Bland (left) and Kyle McCartney were found near Covelo in Mendocino County on November 23, 2020. Both Bland and McCartney were reported following an reported assault several days earlier. (Mendocino County Sheriff's Office)

The bodies of Traci Bland (left) and Kyle McCartney were found near Covelo in Mendocino County on November 23, 2020. Both Bland and McCartney were reported following an reported assault several days earlier. (Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office)

A SUV belonging to one of the victims was found later abandoned, deputies said.

On November 23, deputies said a bystander found the two bodies along Hulls Valley Road, northeast of the valley floor.

An official cause of death is pending. Detectives said they are working with the district attorney’s office on identifying suspects related to McCartney’s and Bland’s deaths.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Office communications line at 707-463-4086 or their tip line at 707-234-2100.