Google product boss cuffed on suspicion of murder after his Microsoft manager wife goes missing, woman's body found, during Hawaii trip

Before he was arrested, Googler appealed to internet, newspaper for help finding his spouse

Smriti Saxena
Missing ... Microsoft manager Smriti Saxena

Updated Sonam Saxena, a product manager at Google Cloud, was arrested in Hawaii this week on suspicion of second-degree murder.

The Hawaii Police Department said Saxena, 43, was cuffed in conjunction with an investigation into the death of a woman, who was found Wednesday morning near Anaehoomalu Bay in the district of South Kohala on the Big Island of Hawaii.

The cops said the identity of the body is being withheld until there's positive identification and the victim's family have been notified.

At the same time, the plod noted the woman was found in the area where the Googler's wife, Smriti Saxena, 41, was reported missing on Tuesday evening by her husband.

On Wednesday morning, West Hawaii Today presented the husband's account of his wife's disappearance: during a late-night stroll along the sea, Sonam left his spouse on the beach to fetch her asthma inhaler from their hotel room, after she found it hard to breathe, and when he returned, she had vanished.

In a LinkedIn post on Wednesday, Saxena asked his network for help finding his missing wife, "so that I can tell my daughters where their Mom is." According to West Hawaii Today, the couple married 17 years ago, and have two children, ages 8 and 13. The family were celebrating their eldest's birthday during their annual vacation on the Pacific island.

Smriti is a business program manager for cloud licensing and monetization at Microsoft, where Harvard-educated Sonam worked from 2011 through 2015, according to their respective LinkedIn profiles. They both lived in Bellevue in the US state of Washington.

On Wednesday, a tweet published through Sonam's Twitter account complained the Hawaii police weren't answering his calls. He was arrested soon after. On Thursday – after Sonam was detained – a tweet about the death of Larry Tesler was shared by his account most likely by an automated app.

Neither Google nor Microsoft immediately responded to requests for comment. ®

Updated to add

The Hawaii Police Department on Friday afternoon said, after conferring with prosecutors, Sonam Saxena, arrested Wednesday on suspicion of second-degree murder, was “released pending investigation.”

Detectives, island police added, are continuing their inquiry. By law, the cops must release suspects after 48 hours if formal charges are not filed.

The police also said they have confirmed the dead woman found was Smriti Saxena. An autopsy was conducted, and further testing is required to determine the exact cause of death.

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