An 18-year-old transgender man has been found dead after disappearing while on a date in Pageland, South Carolina, police have confirmed.

Content warning: This story includes topics that could make some readers feel uncomfortable and/or upset.

Known to his friends as Jacob Williamson, the teen was last seen by family members on the evening of 30 June.

Union County sheriff Eddie Cathey said police recovered what they believe to be his body on the afternoon of 4 June, Newsweek reported.

Following what has been described as an “extensive” investigation by the sheriff’s office in Monroe County and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, two suspects – Joshua Newton, 25, and Victoria Smith, 22 – have been taken into custody.

Newton has been charged with first degree murder and obstruction of justice and Smith with obstruction of justice and accessory after the fact.

Although the case is being considered a homicide, the reason for Jacob’s killing remains unclear at this time.

In a statement on 5 July, Cathay said his “thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the victim in this case as they begin to mourn this unimaginable loss”.