New appeal over mystery behind mummified Leeds teenager

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Detectives investigating the unsolved murder of a woman whose mummified body was found dumped in a Leeds suburb 23 years ago today insist they remain determined to catch her killer.

Donna Healey’s remains were found at the edge of the overgrown grounds of what was then Falloden Nursing Home in Allerton Park, Chapel Allerton, on January 15, 1991.

The discovery by a builder –on what is now the site of luxury apartments – came nearly 
three years after Donna had disappeared, aged 18, while 
working as a prostitute in Harehills.

But it was not until December 2003 that police were able to use advances in DNA technology to establish the remains were those of the missing teenager.

Despite extensive enquiries and local and national media appeals, the identity of her killer remains a mystery.

Detective Chief Inspector Jon Morgan, who is leading the investigation, said: “Donna’s family are still devastated by her death at such a young age and understandably want to know what happened to her and who was responsible.

“Although it has now been 23 years since Donna’s body was found we remain determined to do all we can to find out what happened to her and get her family the answers they need.”

West Yorkshire Police’s Homicide and Major Enquiry Team last year launched a full reinvestigation focusing on key aspects highlighted in a report by national specialists who reviewed the case.

The mummified condition of Donna’s body indicated it had been kept somewhere dry and cool within a building for a long period of time.

Police believe the place where her body was dumped was unlikely to have been chosen at random.

“The specialists’ report strongly suggests that the explanation lies in the Allerton Park area,” Mr Morgan added.

“We also believe that person had some sort of significant development in their circumstances around January 1991 which meant they suddenly had to move Donna’s body after storing it for such a long period of time.

“That might have been due to them moving house, having a partner move in with them or having renovations done that would disturb the place where the body was stored.

“Donna did work as a prostitute and the most likely theory is that she died after going off with a client.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police via 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.