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District Attorney seeks public’s help solving 30-year-old cold case involving woman found in Tucker

Crime and public safety Trending Tucker

District Attorney seeks public’s help solving 30-year-old cold case involving woman found in Tucker

Image provided by the DeKalb County District Attorney's Office.

DeKalb County, GA — The DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office is seeking justice for a woman whose body was found in Tucker nearly 30 years ago.

The woman has finally been identified as Rebecca “Becky” Burke, 52, according to the District Attorney’s Office. The county’s new Cold Case Task Force is seeking information that might lead to the arrest of her killer.

“The cold case dates back to September 16, 1993, when the remains of a woman were found in a wooded area behind the Fairfield Inn located at 2155 Ranchwood Drive (now the Quality Inn Northlake), and a vacant medical office at the intersection of Parklake Drive in the Tucker area,” a press release from the District Attorney’s Office says. “The body was found behind an electrical unit covered in pine straw and branches, which appeared to have been deliberately placed in an effort to conceal the body.”

The press release says that the body was badly decomposed when it was found, and Burke had probably been dead for weeks before she was found.

Image provided by the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office.

“She had sustained traumatic injury to the facial area, as well as a neck fracture that may indicate pressure having been applied to the neck,” the press release says.”No identification was found near the body. However, the victim had extensive dental work, as well as a left hip replacement that may have caused an unusual gait. Despite law enforcement efforts at the time, the woman found on September 16, 1993, was never identified, and her case ran cold.”

Burke was identified through DNA testing after her DNA was linked to a family member. Her last known address was in the Marietta or Smyrna area of Cobb County.

Her identification was funded as part of a collaboration between the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) and Othram, a forensic genealogy company.

“Forensic Genetic Genealogy (FGG), an emerging investigative technique that combines technological advancements in DNA analysis and searching with traditional genealogy research, was used,” the press release says. “FGG, first used to identify the Golden State Killer in 2018, can generate leads to identify unknown suspects, as well as help to identify the remains of homicide victims where traditional law enforcement identification methods have been unsuccessful.”

The family told investigators that Burke may have used the last names of McChesney or Barnes.

“Anyone who may have known or interacted with her in the days and months leading up to her death in 1993 or worked at the Fairfield Inn in the Tucker area during that time frame, is encouraged to call the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Cold Case Tip Line at 404-371-2444,” the press release says. “Callers may remain anonymous.”

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