The body of a missing woman is believed to have been discovered on Sunday in Chattanooga. Officials believe the body belongs to Erika Whaley, who vanished after leaving a battered woman's shelter with an unidentified man. She's been missing for five months now, although her family waited until September to report her disappearance.
Police say that they acted upon a tip when they scoped out the abandoned home, which at one point belonged to the missing woman's grandfather before he died. It was boarded up and abandoned in March of 2011, around six months prior to Erika's disappearance.
Erika Whaley was the mother of four children, at the young age of 25 years old. It's a mystery as to why her family waited so long to report her missing. Four months seems like an awfully long time to wait before reporting the disappearance of a loved one. James Lee (Jimmy) Hall fathered the children belonging to the young, apparently deceased woman. He's been a focus of speculation considering their rocky relationship. He's been charged with some various crimes and accused of others -- of the violent nature.
As for the body discovered this weekend, it appears that she had been in the home for "some time." She was partially decomposed so it will be impossible to determine a cause of death at this time. She will undergo a complete autopsy before results are revealed to the public, no doubt. Fortunately, if this does turn out to be the body of Erika Whaley, there will be closure to this chapter of the case. However, it's time for detectives to work on finding out just what happened to her, who did it, and why?
What's eerie about the photo above, of Erika Whaley, is just how much of a similar appearance she shares with missing woman Michelle Parker. They both have the same angular jaws, edged hair and hair color and the same well-manicured eyebrows. This isn't insinuating that the two disappearances (and now, a death) are related. It's just a very eerie coincidence just how similar Michelle Parker and Erika Whaley look to one another. These two disappearances couldn't possibly be connected based on appearance alone, seeing as though Chattanooga is close to nine hours apart -- unless of course this is the work of a traveling serial predator, which has been speculated on before in several similar disappearances from 2011 and more presently.
Chelsea Hoffman is a prolific crime writer and fiction author with several works published. Her writing has been recognized by such entities as NBC Dateline and several others. Contact her directly by visiting ChelseaHoffman.Com.Or check out "Case to Case" on BlogTalkRadioevery Friday night at 9:00pm(PST)