The parents of missing Alabama woman Danniella Vian have released a statement following an apparent shift in the investigation.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, authorities said on Tuesday that that evidence suggests the female found dead in Vian’s submerged vehicle earlier this month may have died accidentally, as an autopsy did not reveal any signs of trauma.
While the medical examiner has not yet positively identified the body as Vian, AL.com reports that police said on Tuesday they believe the remains are likely the missing mother of one.
“We do believe at this time that the person we recovered in Bayou Sara last week to be Danniella Vian,” Mobile Police Chief Lawrence Battiste reportedly said at a press conference Tuesday. “We are still waiting on definite confirmation from a DNA swab, but once we get that we can say without uncertainty whether it happens to be her or not.”
As CrimeOnline reported, the 26-year-old woman was last seen in July 2018, during a night out with friends. She was reportedly on her way from a bar in West Mobile to meet at another location, along with a friend in a separate car, when she realized she did not have her cell phone. After pulling over at a gas station to search her car for the phone, she reportedly said she would drive back to the earlier bar, believing she may have left her phone there. She was never seen alive again.
Her vehicle, with a female body inside, was found on May 3 by members of law enforcement who were conducting diving drills.
In a statement obtained by WKRG, Vian’s mother Joy Vian indicated that she and Danniella’s father want a homicide investigation to continue.
“Bill and I have been notified that the homicide unit at this point is leaning towards an accident. We are heartbroken and devastated about these findings. Danniella’s father and I still have hope in the homicide division due to the fact that they have not closed the case and it’s still ongoing. There is yet to be a positive ID of our daughter Danniella Vian. Please continue to keep our daughter Danniella in your prayers.”
CrimeOnline will continue to provide updates as more information becomes available.