• Unsolved: New England native missing since May found dead

    By: Bob Ward

    Updated:

    HINSDALE, Mass. - A New England woman missing from Hinsdale, Massachusetts for eight weeks has been found dead.

    "It is unimaginable," her stepdaughter, Jennifer Lancaster, said. "You never think something like this will happen to anyone you know, much less, someone in your family. And it is just an everyday heartache."

    Lancaster's stepmother, Jackie Coutinho, had been missing for almost 75 days. Lancaster spoke to Boston 25 News over FaceTime before news broke that a woman's body was found in Peru, Massachusetts five miles away from where Coutinho was last seen on May 15.

    A few days later, officials confirmed the body was Coutinho's. 

    "I don't think she was suicidal at all," Lancaster told us. "Her granddaughter was her entire world. The earth rotated around that little girl. She was crying the other day that she missed nanny.  It's heartbreaking."

    Coutinho lives in Florida now but at the time of her disappearance, she was visiting her sister in Hinsdale. 

    On May 15, she told her sister she was going outside to bird watch and wasn't seen again until she was found dead. 

    "Right now we are at a dead end. We don't know," private investigator Conrad McKinney said. 

    McKinney had spent weeks searching for Coutinho. Police and private searches -- the most recent last weekend -- had turned up nothing.

    "People don't just disappear," McKinney said. "She's gone. And it's going on seven weeks. We don't know what happened."

    This story has been updated.

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