Skeletal remains found in the basement of a Long Island home detectives dug up last month have been positively identified as those of a woman who disappeared more than 50 years ago, New York authorities said Wednesday.
The Suffolk County Medical Examiner said DNA results prove the bones found buried in the basement of the Southold home March 19 are Louise Pietrewicz, who went missing in October 1966.
Pietrewicz's boyfriend at the time of her disappearance, William Boken, used to own the Lower Road home where her remains were found. He died in the early 1980s. The basement had been searched as part of the initial investigation and parts of it were dug up in 2013 with no results.
Recently, Southold police, spurred by a 10,000 word article in The Suffolk Times and The Riverhead News-Review on the case, reopened the investigation. On March 19, they returned to the basement with ground-penetrating sonar and eventually uncovered an entire skeleton. It was Pietrewicz.
It's not clear if authorities will be able to determine a cause or manner of death.
Even before the bones were positively identified, Pietrewicz's daughter was ecstatic at the news her long lost mother may finally be brought to rest.
"It's almost like a dream. After 51 years! Unbelievable! Thank God, thank God!" Sandy Blampied told The New York Times last month.
Suffolk County Police chief of detectives Gerard Gigante said it was nice to be able to bring closure to the family.
"No murder case or missing person case is resolved until we find a body or make an arrest for murder," Gigante said. "So, in this case, it is good to bring it to a close."