CRIME

Cynthia Joan Gastelle homicide: Remains ID'd as woman missing 32 years

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Police are trying to solve a 32-year-old homicide case after the skeletal remains of a woman, reported missing in Takoma Park in 1982, were recently identified.

Cynthia Joan Gastelle, 18, was reported her missing on April 3, 1980. (Photo: Prince William County Police Dept.)

Prince William County Police say family members of 18-year-old Cynthia Joan Gastelle was reported her missing on April 3, 1980. She had just finished her GED and cosmetology school when she told family members she was taking a bus to Silver Spring for job interviews with two delis.

Two years later, skeletal remains were found on Bull Run Mountain, off of Mountain Road, in the Haymarket area.

More than three decades later, county police detectives are searching for a the victim's then-boyfriend, possibly named "Mike" or "Michael," who may know something about Gastelle's whereabouts or actions at the time she vanished. Before she disappeared, police say she told family members that she was going to Silver Spring for a job interview.

“Cindy was a beautiful vibrant soul. She was a Gift to our family,” says Peter Gastelle, the victim’s brother. “Thirty-two years ago, She walked out of our Takoma Park home, never to return”

Police say DNA gathered from the remains matched another person’s DNA, who was later identified as Gastelle’s relative, collected in an unrelated case, in 2011.

As a result, police were able to successfully identify the skeletal remains as those of Gastelle.

Police say they are investigating this case as a homicide, and are seeking any information about the case. Meanwhile, police say that they hope to speak to an unidentified person about Gastell's disappearance. Prince William County Police released a photo of the man on Wednesday

Police are careful to not call the person pictured a "person of interest" and say that they are simply interesting in speaking to him about Gastelle.

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