Monday, 15 July 2024

Mendocino County officials identify woman found in Russian River

NORTH COAST, Calif. — The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office said it has identified the woman whose body was found in the Russian River late last month.

The woman was identified as Caitlin Bunger, a 37-year-old female who was reportedly a transient in the Ukiah area.

Her body was found by a kayaker in the area of Morrison Creek and Old River Road on the afternoon of Sunday, March 24.

On March 27, a post-mortem examination was conducted as a part of this coroner's investigation.

Sheriff's office personnel researched recent missing person investigations and identified a subject who was a possible match to the physical characteristics of the decedent from this case.

During the post-mortem examination, medical records for the subject reported as missing were compared to the decedent from this investigation. From examining these medical records, the decedent was identified as Bunger.

As a part of this continuing investigation, representatives from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office Coroner's Unit contacted the legal next-of-kin for Bunger and notified them of her death.

According to Bunger's family, she had moved to California approximately five to six months prior to this investigation.

From researching sheriff's office records, Bunger had been reported as a missing person to the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office in October and again in March.

During previous investigations, it was reported that Bunger was homeless and frequented the Perkins Street Bridge area in Ukiah.

The cause and manner of Bunger's death are still being investigated and there are no preliminary findings that can be released at this time from the post-mortem examination.

Anyone with information related to this investigation is requested to contact the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office at 707-463-4086.

Information can also be provided anonymously by calling the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office non-emergency tip line at 707-234-2100.

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