Body found in trunk of car in Milwaukie believed to be missing C - KPTV - FOX 12

Body found in trunk of car in Milwaukie believed to be missing Clackamas Co. woman

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Merrilee Cooley (Family photo) Merrilee Cooley (Family photo)

Deputies said they have located the car belonging to a missing Clackamas County woman. A body was found inside the trunk that investigators believe is Merrilee Cooley.

Deputies said Thursday night that Cooley’s black 2010 Kia Optima was found at the Miramonte Lodge Apartments in Milwaukie. Witnesses said the car had been parked there for several days. 

Early Friday morning, deputies released information stating an elderly woman’s body had been found inside the trunk of the car.

Although a positive identification needs to be made, investigators believe the body to be Cooley's. Results of an autopsy are expected to be released Monday. 

Neighbors said Cooley made everyone feel like family.

"She was the sweetest lady, and didn't deserve anything that did, or may have happened to her," said neighbor Andelain Pierce. 

Family members said the 68-year-old woman had last been seen on Dec. 26. She was reported missing on Dec. 28 under suspicious circumstances.

Peggy Husman, a friend of Cooley's, said she went to Cooley's house on Dec. 28 and found things somewhat disheveled, with Cooley's walker in an odd place and her purse having been rummaged through. Cooley's ID and credit cards were still there.

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