RIVERSIDE (CNS) – A Bellflower woman whose remains were unearthed near
Thousand Palms almost 30 years ago was positively identified based on a DNA
match, authorities said today.
The body of Patricia Cavallaro, 57, was discovered partially buried on
Oct. 24, 1994, in the area of Date Palm Drive and Ramon Road.
Riverside County Sheriff’s Department detectives ultimately determined
that she was the victim of a homicide. However, clues about her identity
were nil, despite a detailed sketch being circulated publicly at the time, and
the case soon went cold.
The investigation was eventually taken over by the District Attorney’s
Office’s Regional Cold Case Homicide Team, whose personnel focused on
genetic material recovered from the victim’s remains and placed in the
California Department of Justice’s Missing & Unidentified Persons System.
Based on an extensive search stemming from a 20-year-old missing
persons report, investigators were able to track down a potential DNA match to
the woman — Cavallaro’s son, whose identity was not disclosed. He provided a
DNA sample that was processed by a private laboratory, Woodlands, Texas-based
The company coordinated with the DOJ in issuing a report last month
confirming that the remains found in 1994 were Cavallaro’s, according to the
What happened to the victim remains a mystery.
According to the Desert Sun, Cavallaro’s husband, also not identified,
reported her missing in 2001, saying only that she had vanished after
leaving home. The man died in 2017.
The unsolved murder case remains open, and anyone with information was
asked to contact investigators at 951-955-5400.
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