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Decomposed Bodies Wash Up on Bay Shore

Tuesday April 15, 2003

A woman walking her dog along the Point Isabel Shoreline in Richmond Monday discovered the decomposed body of a woman at water’s edge, about a mile from where the body of a full-term male fetus was found the day before. 

The East Bay Regional Park Police (EBRP) immediately notified Modesto Police and flew officers who have been investigating the Laci Peterson disappearance to the Richmond shoreline. 

Both bodies were taken to the Contra Costa Coroner’s Office in Martinez. According to Richmond Police, the umbilical cord was still attached to the fetus, which had been dead for some time. 

According to EBRP Police Chief Norman Lapera, there is no evidence linking the discovery of the two bodies to the Peterson case. Laci Peterson, a Modesto resident, was eight-months pregnant when she disappeared on Dec. 24. Her husband, Scott Peterson, said he had been fishing near the Berkeley Marina, about three miles south from where the bodies were discovered, on the day his wife disappeared. 

Lapera said Modesto Police had one detective, two crime scene investigators and an investigator from the District Attorney’s Office at the scene of Monday’s discovery.  

“For all we know this could be a drowning victim,” Lapera said. “We won’t know any more until the autopsy is complete.” 

Lapera said the Contra Costa coroner announced the autopsy would be conducted Monday night. 

“The sheriff’s department is acting in a very professional manner to be able to answer questions,” he said.  

Lapera, addressing a swarm of reporters and television cameras, said he could not address rumors that the woman’s body was discovered wrapped in maternity clothing.