Remains of Thelma Krull found in remote, wooded area: police
There's been a major break in the mysterious disappearance of 57-year-old Thelma Krull.
Winnipeg police announced Thursday her remains were discovered in a rural area outside the city more than 40 kilometres from where Krull was last seen alive.
It's been more than three years since the Winnipeg grandmother vanished while on a walk in her neighbourhood.
Investigators said the area where Krull’s remains were found became a major focus in the investigation earlier this month after a hunter found a skull in the area on Oct. 27.
"We can now confirm through DNA testing that the recovered remains are those of Thelma Krull,” said Sgt. Wes Rommel with the Winnipeg Police Service homicide unit.
Rommel said police got confirmation Wednesday that Krull's remains had been positively identified.
He said this latest development in the three year investigation into her disappearance and death confirms previous beliefs Krull was the victim of a homicide.
"Now, when you find where she's been placed it becomes another link to the suspect,” Rommel told reporters during a media conference.
No arrests have been announced but detectives believe a single suspect may be responsible for Krull's death — someone police say may have a connection to Municipal Road 52 North and Chemin Perrin Road south of Anola, the area where her remains were found.
"This individual certainly may be familiar, somehow, with that area, with that specific location."
People who live in the area said the discovery of Krull's remains comes as a surprise.
Area resident Tom Fryza told CTV News earlier this month the road which RCMP zeroed in on after the hunter’s discovery is hardly used.
"It's not overly-populated,” said Fryza. “You're probably driving a half mile either way to meet people."
Police said Krull left her Harbour View South home for a walk on the morning of Jul. 11, 2015 and arrived at Civic Park near Kildonan East High School at around eight in the morning.
Her cellphone and glasses were recovered in the area in the days following her disappearance.
"We believe that shortly after she arrived at this location, she was involved in a physical altercation with a suspect and was forcibly removed from the area,” said Rommel.
Investigators also believe the suspect knows the area where Krull was last seen alive.
"He lived in the area, worked in the area or was somehow connected to that location."
In Jul. 2016 investigators received a tip about a potential sighting of a woman matching Krull's description, seen with a heavy set man with a bowl-style haircut, on or around the day of her disappearance.
It’s information Rommel said is still relevant to the case.
"But we're also wanting the public to be aware that if you have suspicions about other individuals or other information we want to hear about that as well,” he said.