Source: Body exhumed in Mass. in connection with unsolved disappearance, murder of Holly Piirainen

Sources: Authorities exhume body in Hampden County as part of investigation into disappearance, murder of Holly Piirainen

BOSTON — A source tells Boston 25 News a body has been exhumed in Hampden County which could be connected to the investigation into the disappearance and murder of Holly Piirainen.

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According to information provided to Boston 25 News Reporter Bob Ward by sources, the body belongs to a man, but they wouldn’t reveal much else.

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Then 10-years-old, Holly went missing on Aug. 5, 1993 when she and her family were staying in a family-owned lakefront cottage in Sturbridge just around the corner from where she was last seen.

Her remains were found in Brimfield two months later.

Throughout the years, investigators have run through multiple possible scenarios as explanations for what could have happened to Holly. One of them is the idea that Holly’s abduction was a crime of opportunity with a very narrow window. Under this scenario, the killer’s decision to grab Holly was made in an instant, just as he drove by and spotted the ten year old at the side of the road, looking for those puppies.

Investigators say the abduction took place on the second day of the weeklong vacation. The theory goes, the abduction had to be random, because very few people knew Holly was in the area, and fewer knew she was with her five-year-old brother trying to look at the puppies.

While Holly had just begun her vacation, over the years she and her family had stayed in that cottage many times. The cottage belongs, even today, to Holly’s grandmother, Maureen Lemieux. The Hampden County District Attorney said it’s possible Holly’s killer had seen the little girl earlier in the day, because the killer could also have been very familiar in the neighborhood and could have been watching her.

For over 25 years, Massachusetts State Police investigators returned to the area, seeking DNA samples from neighbors and re-canvassing the area in hopes to find any clue that could link them to the killer.

The only publicly known piece of evidence recovered at the scene was one of Holly’s shoes.

The shoe was located on South Shore Drive, about where Holly would have been standing to see those puppies.


This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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