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Body Found In Burned Detroit Home Identified As Mother Of Missing 4-Year-Old Girl

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) -- Authorities confirmed Monday that one of two bodies found in a burned down house in Detroit on Saturday was missing mother Heidi Walker.

The second body found in the house has not yet been identified.

An Amber Alert was issued for Walker's 4-year-old daughter, Savannah, on Friday after the two went missing from Livingston County on Tuesday.

Savannah Walker
Savannah Walker (police handout)

Michigan State Police Lt. Mike Shaw said that the second body was too badly burned to make an identification and authorities are going to use DNA to determine the identity.

"It's probably going to take us a little bit of time due to the fact that the fire and some of the different things that happened with the body of the second victim," Shaw said. "[It's] going to take us some kind of DNA testing to positively identify that body."

The two bodies were found in a torched, abandoned house in Detroit on Lakeview St. near Forrest Ave. on Saturday morning. Though the second body hasn't been identified as Savannah, authorities know it is the body of a child.

"There's was a lot more damage done to the child than there was to the mother," Shaw said.

A GoFundMe campaign was started to help fund memorial services.

A person of interest, 33-year-old Marcus Hightower, turned himself in to police on Sunday morning. Police considered Hightower armed and dangerous. He was on parole for assault with intent to commit murder.

Detroit police chief James Craig said Hightower and Heidi Walker, 38, had been in a relationship and there was a history of domestic violence between the two.

Marcus Hightower
Marcus Hightower (police handout)

Craig said it wasn't clear if the two people were killed in the home or taken there afterward, but the fire was considered suspicious.

"It's not uncommon where a suspect will commit a crime like murder and try to cover their tracks by setting a fire," he said. "It appears to be intentionally set (in an) abandoned house."

Hightower is being held on parole violations and has not been charged in this case.


TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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