Deanna Denise HowlandEDWARDSVILLE - A human torso found in June 2004 by a maintenance worker at the Wright City, Mo., rest area, at mile marker 199 on westbound Interstate 70 in Warren County has been identified as Deanna Denise Howland.

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Howland was born on Jan. 17, 1969, previously of Alton.

The torso had remained unidentified until March 2016, when new evidence helped reveal the woman's identity.

The Major Case Squad of Greater St. Louis has been reactivated to assist the Madison County, IL., and Warren County, Mo., Sheriff's Departments in a joint effort to follow up on a 2004 Major Case Squad investigation that occurred in Warren County. The Madison County Sheriff's Department has been investigating Howland's disappearance since late 2014.

Madison County Sheriff John Lakin started the press conference and told of the significant development in an old Major Case Squad from back in 2004. He also said the activated Major Case Squad will work out of Madison County on request.

“We are hoping by releasing certain information today, we will generate more leads into the ongoing investigation and hopefully put a successful conclusion to a very brutal murder,” Lakin said.


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The Major Case Squad said Howland was a known drug user and prostitute and was known to frequent the areas of Granite City and East St. Louis. The Major Case Squad said Howland may have also been known by the following names due to previous marriages: Deanna Denise Froehlich, Deanna Denise Kinnear and Deanna Denise Barker.

The Major Case Squad, along with the Madison County and Warren County Sheriff’s Departments are requesting any information pertaining to Howland’s past, disappearance or death. Investigators from both Missouri and Illinois are working out of the Madison County Sheriff’s Office on this investigation, which is being commanded by Major Case Squad Commander Capt. Dan DeCarli.

Major Case Squad officials confirmed that DNA submitted by the family allowed a positive identification on Howland. Several family members had been spoken to in the matter and Howland lived a transient life, Major Case Squad officials said.

The Major Case Squad reps said the key to today’s announcement is to raise public awareness. They all acknowledged that any information into the investigation would be helpful.

If you have any information pertaining to Howland, please contact Crimestoppers at 866-371-8477, or the Madison County Sheriff’s Department at 618-692-6087 or Warren County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department at 636-456-4332.

Major Jeff Connor of the Major Case Squad.

 Capt. Dan DeCarli of the Major Case Squad



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