UPDATE: Remains found in Egg Harbor Township identified as Salem County woman

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A quiet and secluded side street was anything but on Monday, Jan. 6 as detectives combed the woods for evidence after a female body was found by a local hunter a day earlier./R.J. Liberatore Jr. A quiet and secluded side street was anything but on Monday, Jan. 6 as detectives combed the woods for evidence after a female body was found by a local hunter a day earlier./R.J. Liberatore Jr.  EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP – The human remains found Jan. 5 behind the former Shore Mall have been identified as a 30-year-old Salem County woman, and the death has been ruled a homicide.

Acting Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain said the victim has been identified as Tara Rogers Alicea of Monroeville. Alicea was initially identified from photographs of tattoos released to the public. Detectives subsequently confirmed the identity based on fingerprint analysis, McClain said. A DNA analysis is also in progress.

The New Jersey Medical Examiner’s Office has confirmed the cause of death as asphyxiation with strangulation and ruled her death a homicide. The victim’s next of kin have been notified.

A quiet and secluded side street was anything but on Monday, Jan. 6 as detectives combed the woods for evidence after a female body was found by a local hunter a day earlier.

Egg Harbor Township police detectives joined members of the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit in searching the woods about 150 feet west of the intersection of Broadway and Ninth avenues.

At 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 5, a hunter discovered human remains in the woods behind Harbor Square, formerly known as the Shore Mall, McClain said.

The hunter, who is a local police officer, immediately reported the body to the police.

The remains were collected by State Medical Examiner’s Office personnel. A state medical anthropologist was also consulted due to the advanced decomposition of the remains.

Photographs of tattoos found on the victim's right wrist and right foot were made public to aid in identification.

Authorities have not indicated how long the body had been left there.

The homicide is under investigation by the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit and the Egg Harbor Township Police Department.

Anyone who has any information pertaining to this case or has noticed any suspicious activity in the area is asked to call the Major Crimes Unit at 609-909-7666.

 


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