Digital Access

Digital Access
Access saukvalley.com from all your digital devices and receive breaking news and updates from around the area.

Home Delivery

Home Delivery
Local news, prep sports, Chicago sports, local and regional entertainment, business, home and lifestyle, food, classified and more! News you use every day! Daily, Daily including the e-Edition or e-Edition only.

Text Alerts

Text Alerts
Choose your news! Select the text alerts you want to receive: breaking news, prep sports scores, school closings, weather, and more. Text alerts are a free service from SaukValley.com, but text rates may apply.

Email Newsletters

Email Newsletters
We'll deliver news & updates to your inbox. Sign up for free e-newsletters today.
State

Autopsy: Woman’s death a homicide

MACHESNEY PARK – A northern Illinois woman whose disappearance sparked a massive search suffered “blunt force trauma” and an autopsy ruled her death a homicide, Winnebago County Sheriff’s Police said Tuesday.

Katrina Smith, 30, of Machesney Park, was last seen Oct. 22. She didn’t show up for her human resources job at Camryn Company in Belvidere on Oct. 23.

An off-duty firefighter fishing on the Rock River found Smith’s body Friday in the water near Byron. The body was decomposing and caught in a submerged tree, authorities said. The body was clothed but the garments were faded and unidentifiable, the Rockford Register Star reported.

The woman’s abandoned vehicle, purse and cellphone were found in the days after her disappearance. Bloody paper towels also were found, but it’s unclear if they are connected to the case.

Smith’s disappearance sparked a community response with daily search parties, fliers posted seeking information about her whereabouts, and hundreds attending a candlelight vigil on Nov. 1.

Smith’s brother, Chad Kaltved, 38, said family members are confident police will find out what happened to his sister.

“We want justice,” he said. “We’re not going to be happy until we find out who did this.”

Smith’s funeral is planned for Saturday.

Loading more