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Police identify woman whose body was found in Pawcatuck River

WESTERLY — Local police have identified the 83-year old Westerly woman, whose body was discovered Sunday morning in the Pawcatuck River, as Giuseppa Ferraro.

The police were called to the Viking Marina shortly after 8:15 and the woman, with black hair, wearing glasses and a dress, was pronounced dead by Westerly Ambulance Corps members.

As dozens of customers crowded into the Mermaid Cafe, which shares a parking lot with the marina on Margin Street, police blocked off the area where the woman’s body was lying after being retrieved from the water.

Her body was covered with a blue tarp as police waited for the Rhode Island Medical Examiner to arrive.

Police were looking for anyone who may have seen her in the area early Sunday.

The body was reported to have been discovered by a man walking his dogs in the vicinity of the docks. Divers retrieved the body from the water. A witness indicated that he had seen the woman at about 1 p.m. on Saturday sitting on the grass near the entry to the marina. No one else reported seeing the woman, whose jacket and one sandal were found in the same area.

There is no obvious indication of foul play, according to a medical examiner’s preliminary investigation on the scene. Kerry Burke, a Rhode Island Department of Health medicolegal death investigator, took photos and examined the body before it was taken away. A complete autopsy will be done at the medical examiner’s office in Providence.

Meanwhile, Sgt. Robert Warner, who was on the scene, said the police would continue to investigate details of the incident to determine whether it may have been an accident.

aalgier@thewesterlysun.com



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