Decapitated body found in Lawrence identified as missing teen

LAWRENCE, Mass. (AP) — Massachusetts authorities have identified a decapitated body found near the Merrimack River in Lawrence as the remains of a 16-year-old boy who had been missing for two weeks.

Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett said the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner positively identified the victim as Lee Manuel Viloria-Paulino of Lawrence. He was last seen on Nov. 18 at his grandmother’s house, also in Lawrence.

His decapitated body was discovered Thursday on the riverbank by a woman walking her dog. Police recovered the head a short distance away.

Blodgett said the gruesome discovery is a tragic loss for his family and friends.

Blodgett said authorities are “working tirelessly to determine the person or persons responsible” for his death. He said he would not speculate about the circumstances of his death.

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