South Florida

South Florida Woman Missing for 6 Years Found in Warehouse Freezer

The body of 35-year-old Heather Lacey was found in a freezer at a scrap warehouse in Margate

The body of a South Florida woman who had been missing for six years was found inside a freezer at a scrap warehouse.

The owner of the Margate business, Lilian Argueta, said she opened the freezer and found the body of 35-year-old Heather Lacey in March.

"I thought it was a witch, or a mannequin," Argueta told the Sun-Sentinel. "I thought, 'It can’t be a person.' But there was a bad odor."

Argueta told NBC 6 that the freezer was brought to her business to be used for scrap metal, and she said she was in shock and crying when she made the discovery.

"I started to scream," Argueta said in Spanish. "I had never seen such a thing."

Lacey's father told the paper he hadn't heard from her since Thanksgiving 2013. Randell Lacey said he filed a missing-persons report for his daughter in December 2013, telling deputies she lived on the streets and was bipolar, the report said.

The discovery came after Jonathan Escarzaga was found dead inside his Hollywood apartment in February. The freezer had been in his apartment and was moved to the scrap warehouse after the apartment manager hired a company to remove the appliances.

Warehouse owners said Friday the freezer wasn't locked. They opened it about a month after Escarzaga's death and found the missing woman.

Police haven't said whether Escarzaga played a role in her death or if the two knew each other. Hollywood Police are investigating.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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