Yakima woman found dead near Lake Myron under strange circumstances, police say
YAKIMA, Wash. — Yakima police are investigating the death of a 54-year-old woman found Monday morning near Lake Myron as a possible homicide, but said the circumstances leading up to her death are strange.
Officers responded about 7:30 a.m. to reports that an employee of a business on Lakeside Court off of Fruitvale Boulevard had found a woman laying on an embankment near the business. Responding officers found the 54-year-old Yakima woman dead and began to investigate the case as a homicide.
Capt. Jay Seely said the woman was partially clothed and detectives from both the Major Crimes and Special Assault units were called to the scene. Detectives reportedly found security footage from a nearby business that appears to document the hours leading up to her death.
Seely said the woman arrived in the parking lot between two businesses on Lakeside Court about 5:30 p.m. Sunday, sitting in a car with an unidentified man. He said the two appeared to have an altercation, after which the man took the car and left the woman in the parking lot.
“Then she starts to disrobe all by herself and throw her clothes into the parking lot,” Seely said. “And then for about the next four hours, she’s either sitting or laying down on the ground, rolling around. And then eventually she goes out of camera view and down over the embankment.”
Seely said the temperature was about 19 degrees overnight and may have caused hypothermia, but it’s unknown at this time what caused her death.
“We’re going to investigate this as a homicide until proven otherwise,” Seely said. “We’re hoping that the autopsy will reveal that information.”
Seely said this case illustrates the importance of community members helping investigators by providing surveillance video and why they should get involved with the police department’s SafeCam program.
“It’s not giving us access all the time to your cameras, but if there’s an incident nearby, we will ask you if maybe you captured the event,” Seely said. “Then we would ask your permission if we could look at it.”
Residents can go to the Yakima Police Department website to find more information about or register for the SafeCam program.