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Jamul woman's body discovered week after disappearance; Sheriff homicide investigating

Melissa Whitby found dead on hiking trail
Posted at 6:11 PM, Jan 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-09 22:35:05-05

A woman reported missing on New Year’s Eve is now considered a murder victim after her body was discovered over the weekend on a hiking trail about two miles from her home.

Melissa Whitby, 49, was a nurse at a local elder care facility. San Diego Sheriff's homicide Lt. Kenn Nelson told 10News that no one has been arrested for her murder, but no one has been ruled out, either. 

"Her husband did report her missing. They live up the street from where the body was found. The most I can get into on that is that she was last seen at the house."

He said the body was discovered in brush alongside the hiking trail. She had trauma to her upper body and an autopsy determined she was murdered.

"Exact details of the crime scene, I can't say because we don't have any suspects right now in custody. Those are things we want to hold back while we question folks who may or may not be involved in this." 

On Facebook she is very private with her postings; showing only pictures of birds, flowers, and a lily pond.

Her husband, Perry Whitby, has a similar page.

Perry Whitby was arrested in Maryland in 1993 and charged with the murders of two brothers of his fiance at the time.

Maryland authorities talked about seeking the death penalty and that the alleged murder weapon was found:  a .32 caliber semi-automatic pistol. But Whitby was not convicted.