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Public's Help Sought in Solving Slaying of Woman

April 23, 1998|ROBERTO J. MANZANO

Police are asking for the public's help in solving the disappearance and slaying of an Aliso Viejo woman.

For more than two months, detectives following several leads have been unable to identify Lillian DeVilla's killer, Laguna Beach Police Sgt. Robert Rahaeuser said.

On Feb. 4, city workers found DeVilla's body in a field on the 20000 block of Laguna Canyon Road. Detectives estimate that DeVilla, 55, died within 24 hours of her body being discovered. Investigators also believe that the petite woman, at 5 feet 3 inches and 105 pounds, died where she was found.

The Orange County coroner's office determined that DeVilla died after being hit in the head with an unspecified object. Her body was discovered fully clothed, with charcoal-colored pants, a long-sleeved black sweater and white tennis shoes, but without identification.

Witnesses last saw DeVilla leaving her job at a clothing manufacturer in Carlsbad on Jan. 29, Rahaeuser said. Later that evening, DeVilla's family found her green Honda Accord, with her purse and keys inside, near her home. The next day relatives reported DeVilla missing to authorities.

"It does not appear DeVilla was forcibly abducted from her home," Rahaeuser said.

Those with information about DeVilla's disappearance or death are asked to call Laguna Beach Det. Lou Gutierrez at (949) 497-0371.

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