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Woman's body found inside RV's freezer

October 30, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
The badly decomposed body of a woman was found in the freezer of an impounded motor home in the Capistrano Beach area of Dana Point.Workers at a tow yard found the woman's body inside the RV on Tuesday.

WATCH: Eileen Frere with the latest on the investigation in Orange County

Orange County Sheriff's deputies say the RV belongs to 55-year-old Clarence Butterfield, the father of a young Temecula woman reported missing in June. Authorities say Butterfield has an extensive arrest record for violent crimes. Butterfield is in custody in Las Vegas on unrelated charges.

Butterfield has been charged with murder.

Butterfield was arrested last month in Dana Point after being stopped for a traffic violation. Deputies discovered he was wanted in Nevada for resisting arrest and interfering with police. Butterfield was transported back to Las Vegas, where he remains in custody.

Authorities say Butterfield was living in the RV for several months on the property of an acquaintance in Dana Point. After Butterfield was arrested the acquaintance called a tow company to have the motor home removed. It was towed on Oct. 1 to a yard in San Clemente.

Towing yard employees were inspecting the RV on Tuesday and found the woman's body wrapped in several sheets of plastic inside a 5-foot freezer.

"An autopsy was performed on those human remains, which were very badly decomposed. The cause of death has been undetermined at this time, as well as no positive identification has been established. It's going to take DNA or dental records, as I stated earlier, to positively identify the person," said Jim Amormino from the Orange County Sheriff's Department.

Authorities say the woman had been dead anywhere from several months to years.

Investigators are now trying to determine if the body is that of Butterfield's missing daughter, 22-year-old Rebekah Butterfield. Rebekah's mother, who lives back east, last saw her daughter a couple of years ago.


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