Missing Dravosburg Woman Found Dead, Police Say; Suspect Arrested

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Remains believed to be those of a Dravosburg woman who has been missing since Nov. 6 were found Wednesday morning just outside of Sutersville, police said.

Heather Rene Short, 46, was last seen at a residence in the Homeville section of West Mifflin where she was visiting friends. Allegheny County police have arrested a man identified as Dale Cooper, 36, no address given, in connection with her death.

Cooper was arrested Wednesday night in Homestead and will be charged with criminal homicide, tampering with physical evidence and abuse of a corpse, Allegheny County police Lt. Ken Ruckel said in a prepared statement. Cooper is currently in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting formal arraignment, police said.

McKeesport police began looking for Short on Nov. 10 after she failed to return home. Allegheny County police took over the investigation Nov. 21, and her family went public with a plea for information on Dec. 7.

Police working the case developed multiple leads and interviewed several people, Ruckel said. County homicide detectives determined that Short was killed inside a home in West Mifflin and that her body was loaded into her car, then driven to a wooded area in Sewickley Township, Ruckel said.

Short's remains were discovered by homicide detectives at 10:25 a.m. Wednesday along Scott Haven Road, he said, just across the Youghiogheny River from Allegheny County.

Allegheny County and Westmoreland County officials, in cooperation with the state police, determined that Allegheny County police would assume jurisdiction, and Short's body has been taken to the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office for an autopsy, Ruckel said.

Originally published January 24, 2019.

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