Police Identify Woman's Torso Found in Niagara River

September 7, 2012 Updated Sep 7, 2012 at 6:55 PM EDT

By WKBW News

...
September 7, 2012 Updated Sep 7, 2012 at 6:55 PM EDT

Niagara Falls, NY -- Police have confirmed through DNA testing, the female torso recovered in the Niagara River on August 29th has been identified as Loretta Gates, a 30-year-old Niagara Falls resident.

Niagara Falls Police and New York State Police are now investigating Loretta Gates' disappearance as a homicide.

According to a news release, Gates was last seen around Main Street and Niagara Avenue in Niagara Falls on August 25th.

Her family reported her missing to the Niagara Falls Police on September 4th.

Loretta's mother, Tammy Gates, had previously told Eyewitness news she had a "gut feeling" the torso belonged to her daughter.

Loretta Gates had three children.

Niagara Regional Police also confirm they recovered a partial leg and partial arm from the whirpool rapids in Southern Ontario.

A fisherman reported seeing body parts and called authorities Thursday night. Once daylight broke, police started searching the area.

Spokesman Derek Watson says the parts were recovered Friday afternoon at 4:00 by Niagara Regional Police.

The body parts have been sent to Hamilton General Hospital's pathology unit for DNA testing. Investigators will see if the parts also match Loretta Gates.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Niagara Falls Police Detective Bureau at (716) 286-4553.