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Autopsy Completed on Pregnant Woman and Infant Reportedly Murdered Through Internet DeceptionTim King Salem-News.com
Detectives believe the suspect may have had contact with numerous pregnant women in the Portland-Metropolitan area.
(PORTLAND, Ore.) - The Oregon Medical Examiner's Office reports that an autopsy was performed Sunday on Heather Snively and her infant son to determine the cause of their deaths. Police believe Ms. Snively, in her third trimester of pregnancy, was Murdered last Friday by Korena Roberts. (see: Oregon Woman Accused of Killing Mother-to-Be & Taking Her Baby (UPDATE) - Salem-News.com)
The Medical Examiner's office determined that Ms. Snivley was killed by homicidal violence. After the apparent Murder, Roberts actually called 911 and tried to pass the dead or dying baby off as her own.
At this time it has not been determined if Heather Snivley died because of head wounds, or as a result of cutting injuries she received to her abdomen.
Police are not speculating at this point while they work through the investigation. There are many unanswered questions at this time.
A person using the name Brendan O left this comment on our first report regarding Heather's tragic death, "That stupid show Private Practice on ABC showed a very similar set of circumstances unfold. There are people demented enough to use a show as a springboard for conducting such a heinous crime."
So far police have not commented on any possible connection between the crime and lessons learned on the ABC program.
The autopsy determined that Ms. Snively's unborn son was removed from her womb after she had been cut open. Additional lab analysis and investigation will be required to determine if the infant died before or after he was removed from the womb.
Detectives from the Washington County Major Crimes Team have been working around the clock on this case and are diligently trying to reconstruct the series of events that led to the murder of Heather Snively and her unborn son.
At this point, it is apparent that Korena Roberts had been telling friends and family for months that she was pregnant. She had told many people she knew, including her live-in boyfriend, that she was pregnant with twins.
Detectives believe that Ms. Snively and Ms. Roberts only knew each other for a short period of time, perhaps a week or so. It is unclear whether they met via advertisements on Craigslist or by some other means. Investigators will continue to track down this information in order to understand how the two women first met and for what purpose.
A friend of Heather's named Niclole in Charleston, West Virginia, wrote. "I had Heather in my sunday school class years ago then she started attending our Youth group at the church. Heather was such a pleasant girl and really turned her life around. I feel so sorry for her family and for her boyfriend. My heart and prayers go out to them at this difficult time. I hope that this young lady is put behind bars for a very long time."
The Strissel Family in Edgewater, Maryland left this comment on the story about Heather's death, "Heather was by far one of the most genuine people I have ever met. She was a very dear friend to me...like a sister. She helped me raise my kids, and had an unconditional glow with the fact she was about to be a Mommy herself. She and Jonathon are angels among us and will be forever missed and trully loved. Heather we will see you again....We Love you!!!"
Another friend of the deceased named Brittiany Rhodes was less restrained in her thoughts about the crime that was committed against her friend.
"Because of this psycho who apparently has no sense of humanity I have lost a truly dear friend of mine . Heather was so happy that she was preg and so close to having her son we talked all the time on the phone about our babys and how much we were gonna show them to each other i just want everyone to no heather was a good hearted person she was really seen the good in people . and ill always have our memories i just wish this never happend i love u so much and i hope to see u one day."
Detectives believe it is possible that Roberts had contact with numerous pregnant women in the Portland-Metropolitan area.
At this point, they are asking anyone who has had contact with Ms. Roberts either via the Internet or in person, to please call the Washington County Sheriff's Office at (503) 846-2700.
Police say Roberts' boyfriend continues to be cooperative with investigators and does not face any criminal charges at this time.
Tim King is a former U.S. Marine with twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. In addition to his role as a war correspondent, this Los Angeles native serves as Salem-News.com's Executive News Editor.
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