Body found in river, police investigating - WNEM TV 5

Family of woman found dead in river seek answers

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ZILWAUKEE TOWNSHIP, MI (WNEM) -

Police have identified a woman after her body was found in a local river.

The body of 41-year-old Evette Vasquez of Saginaw County was recovered early Friday morning in the Saginaw River off of Kochville Road in Zilwaukee Township.

Saginaw County Sheriff Bill Federspiel said at 2:52 a.m. on June 30, a man called Saginaw County Central Dispatch saying he had been in the area with Vasquez but left when he couldn’t find her.

When officers arrived on the scene they found her floating face-down in the water.

At this point, the death is being treated as suspicious, police said. 

"It's definitely a suspicious death anytime you get a call almost 3 o'clock in the morning and somebody's floating face down in the river. Yeah, it's definitely a suspicious death. There's a reason, I mean I think I've only been up here a couple times in my 30-year career and it's always been on calls and it's always been on something that isn't very good. So what they were doing up in this area I don't know. I don't know the full extent of their relationship. That will help as well when we finally determine what the relationship status was," Federspiel said.

The man who called 911 is being questioned.

This isn't the first time tragedy has struck this family.

John Vasquez, Evette's brother, has three sisters and in the last two years two of them died tragically.

"It's hard to even put into words how you feel day to day," he said.

In September 2015 his baby sister Melissa Olivarez was shot and killed in a car on Saginaw's south side. Her killer has not been located.

This past weekend his family was hit with another crushing blow when his older sister Evette was found dead.

John Vasquez said Evette's boyfriend was the last person to see her alive.

"They were out on Kochville Road in the middle of the night and then he made a 911  call around three in the morning stating that he couldn't find her. And so they dispatched a search team and they located her body floating in the Saginaw River," he said.

The results of Evette's autopsy have not yet been released.

Until her autopsy is complete, the biggest clue to solving her death is her boyfriend who police have not named as a suspect.

John Vasquez said the couple had a five year relationship. While her boyfriend may be a lot of things, he is not so sure a killer is one of them.

"Honestly, my gut tells me no. But it's hard to make any assumptions," John Vasquez said.

He can't stop thinking about the harm his sister might have faced.

"It's very detrimental. You don't stop thinking about it. While we still have an open wound from my other sister's murder, this now happens. So our family is quite devastated," he said.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help with funeral costs.

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