Police confirm identity of 23-year-old woman found dead behind North End business
Published Sunday, September 2, 2012 2:28PM CST
Last Updated Tuesday, September 4, 2012 10:06AM CST
Police have confirmed the identity of the woman found dead behind a North End business on Sunday.
Police said the body of Simone Sanderson, 23, was recovered around 2 p.m. Sunday.
On Tuesday, officers continued to scour the crime scene at Main Street and Burrows Avenue Tuesday morning..
Betty-Ann Sanderson, Simone's grandmother, is now mourning the young woman's loss.
“I can’t even find the words to say about this death,” said Betty-Ann. “I can’t believe it still, until I see the body myself.”
Sanderson had gone missing and was last seen Aug. 26 in the West Broadway area.
The homicide unit is now investigating the find, but police would not confirm whether or not Simone was murdered.
“We don’t want to jump the gun at this point with regards to providing too much information,” said Const. Jason Michalyshen. “We want investigators to gather as much as they can.”
On Sunday police spent much of the day investigating a body found behind a building at Main and Burrows.
Officers closed the area to traffic while they investigated at a business on the corner and could be seen snapping photos of a grassy area behind the building.
Eastbound Burrows at Main Street was closed to traffic for hours while police investigated.
About a dozen police cruisers and the police identification unit could be seen near the rear of the business throughout the day and night.
The find confirmed what many North End residents suspected.
A man who lived nearby said Sunday, “I heard one of the young ladies scream that she had found a body.”
He said a woman was rummaging through the refuse behind the building, looking for scrap metal just after 2 p.m. He said she lifted a large piece of cardboard and found a woman’s body.
The man, who asked not to be named, added, “I went around back to see what it was. I guess that’s what the smell was I was smelling.”
Several residents in the area complained the area had a strong foul odour for the last two days. A resident described the smell as “rotting garbage.”
Police sent out a release on Friday, asking the public if they had seen Simone, who had been missing for days.
In the release, police said they were concerned for her well-being.
Simone's Facebook page has numerous posts from Betty-Ann, asking about her well-being and where she was.
Simone last posted on Facebook on Aug. 26, saying, "Leaving WPG."
Betty-Ann said homicide detectives contacted her Sunday afternoon and told her Simone’s body had been found.
Burrows Avenue was reopened later Sunday evening, but police said Monday they would remain on scene to investigate the find.
Betty-Ann said Simone had disappeared before but had always come back.
Police haven’t confirmed how long Simone’s body was on the street but said an autopsy is pending to determine the cause of her death.
Her family is planning on holding a vigil in the next few days.
Family members have identified the woman found dead behind a North End business Sunday as Simone Sanderson.
Betty-Ann Sanderson, Simone Sanderson's grandmother, speaks to the media Monday.
The Winnipeg police's forensic identification unit remained on scene Monday.
Winnipeg police's forensic identification section was on scene investigating Sunday.
Winnipeg police move police tape at Burrows Avenue and Main Street where they investigated Sunday.