Police hoping new technology will reveal identity of exhumed body

By Lisa Rantala - bio | email

Posted by Kate Oatis - email

(WTOL) - Michigan detectives exhumed the body of a murder victim Tuesday, 27 years after they buried her, all in the hopes of finding out who she was.

The dig took place at the Roselawn Cemetery in La Salle. Last summer, Monroe County detectives received a tip as to who this murder victim might be. So, they decided to find out if updated technology could lead to her identity.

"It was a big decision but we felt that if we were going to have any chance of closing this case or potentially finding out the perp who did it, this had to be done," said Detective Jeff Pauli.

The woman's body washed up near the Detroit Edison plant from Lake Erie back in 1982. She was white, in her late teens to late 20s. She was wearing only a top and had a telephone cord wrapped around her neck.

Detectives feel she had been floating in the lake for several weeks to several months. They sent her description to local media and alerted nearby agencies.

The case went cold, and a month later she was buried.

"It's very frustrating, but I think the goal is to bring closure to this family," Pauli said.

Detectives are collecting her DNA and hoping to create a facial reconstruction, something they hope to show the public within the next two months.

"The idea is to solve this for that family and, at the very least, bring closure to that family that we have their loved one's remains," Pauli said.

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