Feds: Body found in Greene County is missing W.Va. teen
By The Associated Press
Published: Wednesday, March 13, 2013, 3:33 p.m.
WHEELING, W.Va. — A body found in southwestern Pennsylvania is that of a West Virginia girl who went missing last summer, federal officials said Wednesday
The remains found Jan. 16 in Wayne Township have been confirmed as those of 16-year-old Skylar Neese of Star City, said U.S. Attorney William Ihlenfeld, top prosecutor for West Virginia's northern district.
The FBI is doing tests on her remains, Ihlenfeld said, and an investigation into her death is under way.
An honors student at University High in Morgantown, Neese was last seen on surveillance video leaving her family's apartment July 6, and getting into a car. The Greene County location where she was found is less than 30 miles from there.
Last month, her parents celebrated her 17th birthday without her, holding a candlelight vigil with both friends and strangers. The crowd released heart-shaped paper lanterns, which floated into the sky.
Carol Michaud, Skylar's aunt, told The Dominion Post that the teenager was an environmentalist, and she would have preferred them to balloons.
Friends at the event described Neese as bubbly and kind.
"You never think this would happen to someone you know," Kelsey Konchesky said.
A legislator from the family's district also recently introduced a bill called Skylar's Law to ensure missing children's cases are handled with urgency. It would modify West Virginia's Amber Alert plan to issue public announcements when any child is reported missing and thought to be in danger, rather than just those believed to have been kidnapped.
Because Neese was seen getting into a vehicle, family members said authorities classified her as a runaway and no alert was issued. But they believe the girl intended to return, noting she didn't take money, contact lenses or other personal items.
Delegate Charlene Marshall, D-Monongalia, said she understands that a surge in alerts might make some people stop paying attention, but she believes it's still the right thing to do.
Last week, an emotional David Neese appealed to the House Judiciary Committee on his daughter's behalf before it amended and advanced the measure.
"Changing this law, God forbid, may be too late for Skylar," he said, fighting back sobs. "But please allow for this bill to be debated on the floor so other families may not have to go through this horrible ordeal."
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pennsylvania sting scouted private liquor store sites
- Young Pakistani immigrant linked to Pennsylvania woman known as ‘Jihad Jane’ sentenced to prison