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Smoke inhalation contributed to the death of woman found shot in burning car, medical examiner says

A vigil was held for Sara Hudson who was robbed, shot and her car set on fire in popular Dallas entertainment district.

DALLAS — While a gunshot wound to Sara Hudson's head was ruled the official cause of her death, smoke inhalation contributed to her death, revealed a medical examiner's report released Friday. 

Family and friends cried and hugged Thursday as they gathered to remember Hudson.

"[It's] really sad to hear their loss and their side of things,” said Alex Bjornsen, the vigil's organizer.

The vigil was held in Lower Greenville, where Hudson's body was found inside a burning SUV three nights before. 

Candles and flowers marked the spot where police found Hudson's body in the trunk of her vehicle after sources say she had been shot and the SUV set on fire.

Thursday, her family issued a statement:

"This is an unspeakable tragedy. Sara was a young woman of immense talent and immeasurable potential. She was beloved by all who knew her and deeply touched everyone she met. The world is a more precious place because of her and sadder now without her."

Credit: WFAA
Flowers form a heart and candles spell out "Sara" at the site where Sara Hudson's body was found on Aug. 19, 2019.

“They said she was a sweet, caring person, and like any other youthful 22 year old," Bjornsen said. "It's very sad."

Rhett Esval also attended the vigil. He says he saw Hudson and the suspect the night of the homicide as he rode his bike in the area. 

"I looked over at this parking lot and I saw a larger man pushing a woman towards the car," he said.

But Esval said he didn't realize what he was seeing.

Credit: Courtesy / WFAA
Sara Hudson

RELATED: Suspect arrested in death of woman found in burning car in Lower Greenville

"I didn't think anything of it at the time,” he said.

Sources said Hudson had just parked her car and was on her way to the Texas Truck Yard to celebrate her 22nd birthday when the suspect, Glen Richter, forced her back into the driver's side of her SUV. 

They said he then got into the backseat and forced her to drive to ATMs. Afterwards, he shot her and set the SUV on fire. 

Surveillance videos captured some of the crime.

According to an arrest warrant, fingerprints left on the SUV led them to the suspect.

“It's really unsettling that it could happen here,” Bjornsen said of the crime that happened before the sunset in a popular and high-traffic area of Dallas. 

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