Police are focused on determining the identity of a female torso recovered from the lower Niagara River in Niagara Falls, Ont., near the Rainbow Bridge on Wednesday.
A preliminary autopsy has determined that the woman, of Caucasian descent and between 20 and 40 years old, was the victim of a homicide. Police won’t release cause of death until autopsy results are complete.
Inspector Jim McCaffery of the Niagara Regional Police told reporters on Friday that police are currently investigating a number of tips, but urged members of the public to come forward with any information that might identify the woman or her killer.
The remains were spotted floating in the fast-moving water of the lower Niagara River at 2 p.m. on August 29. A passerby alerted Niagara Parks Police Service, and a torso without limbs or a head was removed.
The preliminary post-mortem indicated the woman had a pierced navel without jewellery and at least one caesarean section scar.
The body may have been in the water for anywhere from four to 10 days.
An emergency task unit, marine unit and the Niagara Parks Police high angle river team were being called on to search for the rest of the woman’s remains, McCaffery said.
“We’ve alerted our policing partners to review their case files and forward them to us,” said Inspector McCaffery, which includes services in Toronto, Durham region, Halton and even New York state.
Despite an investigation of the immediate area where the body was found, Inspector McCaffery said it was impossible to determine if the body originated from the Canada or American side of the Niagara River at this time.
Investigators and forensic experts have also confirmed that the torso is not related to the Peel police investigation involving the slaying of Toronto woman Liu Guanghua.
Ms. Liu’s body parts – but not her torso – were found earlier this month west of Toronto in Mississauga and near her home in east-end Toronto.
With files from The Canadian Press