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Body discovered of Gibsonton woman reported missing

RIVERVIEW — Authorities are investigating the death of a 32-year-old Gibsonton woman whose partially decomposed body was found early Monday near a business park.

The body was identified as Melissa Gail Easterling, according to the Hillsborough Sheriff's Office.

The Medical Examiner's Office has not yet ruled on a cause of death. The Sheriff's Office classified it as suspicious.

Easterling was last seen by her family on June 19, the Sheriff's Office said in a statement. On Saturday, her family went to her home to check on her.

When they couldn't find her, they contacted the Sheriff's Office and reported her missing.

A 911 caller discovered the body about 8 a.m. near Oak Creek Commerce Park, which is at Eagle Palms and Pelican Creek drives in Riverview.

It wasn't clear how long the body had been in a grassy area near a retention pond there. Heat and rain may have led to the body's advanced decomposition, said Larry McKinnon, a Sheriff's Office spokesman.

Anyone with any information about the case was asked to call the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office at (813) 247-8200 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477).

Body discovered of Gibsonton woman reported missing 06/27/11 [Last modified: Monday, June 27, 2011 8:49pm]
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