Humboldt County Deputy Coroner Roy Horton said today that the body of the victim found in a car submerged in Freshwater Lagoon on June 18 was confirmed by dental records to be that of Big Lagoon resident Katherine Iva Gillham, who was reported missing to the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office in June 2012.
Gillham left Grants Pass, Ore., at about 2 a.m. on June 11, 2012, and an investigation into her disappearance found she stopped at Elk Valley Casino in Crescent City between 2:30 a.m. and 2:56 a.m. Her family later hired a private investigator to help find her.
"We're presuming she died of drowning, but she had been in the water for two years, so it's hard to say," Horton said. "There were no signs of trauma on her body that would be correlated to the accident. We're thinking she probably fell asleep and drove off the roadway."