Last week, I published a story concerning the death of Laura Rous, an Otsego County, NY woman whose remains were found in a wooded area in Morris. Through the story's social media post, I was able to connect with Laura's mother Val Rous. Over the course of our conversations, it became clear that Laura's family is just as in the dark as the public, and are desperately seeking answers about what exactly happened to Laura. When I placed a call to the New York State Police's public information officer inquiring about this case, I was quickly told that there was no new information. The following text is an interview I conducted with Val.

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WZOZ: Is the investigation into Laura’s death still open and ongoing?

Val Rous: Yes

WZOZ: Has anything changed as far as the investigation goes? Has the person originally handling the case since retired? How has that impacted things?

Val Rous: Yes. The original detective has retired. We have a different investigator who continues to follow all leads.

WZOZ: There hasn’t been any public news on Laura’s case since August of 2022. Have you been given any information either from state troopers or the district attorney’s office?

Val Rous: No public news since 8/2022. No information from state troopers or the district attorney's office.

WZOZ: What, if any forensic investigation was conducted on Laura’s remains? Was there any kind of autopsy completed?

Val Rous: Yes. Remains were examined by pathologists and autopsy was performed. Results are pending at this time.

WZOZ: It's been over a year, you still don't have autopsy results? All they've told you is that it's still pending?

Val Rous: Yes they have only told us the results are still pending.

WZOZ: Investigators noted that Laura’s body may have been in the area where it was found for around two months. Was she reported as a missing person? If so, when? What were you told at that time?

Val Rous: Yes. I called twice and other family members also reported her missing from 8/2022 on. They did not believe the remains were Laura.

WZOZ: Have you been informed of any suspects or persons of interest? Has anyone been questioned about Laura’s case?

Val Rous: They continue to gather information and follow all leads.

After over a year from when Laura's remains were found, there are still so many unanswered questions. What is taking forensic pathology so long? Per the East Tennessee State University's forensic center's website: "Death certificates will state ‘pending’ when laboratory studies or further investigations are needed to determine the cause and/or manner of death.  When the autopsy/examination report is finalized by the forensic pathologist (usually within 60 days from the date of autopsy) a delayed diagnosis of death addendum is filed with Vital Records listing the cause and manner of death.While 60-90 days is about the norm for results, why is the family still waiting close to 14 months after Laura's death?

If you have any information relating to this case, please call 607-561-7400 to make a report.

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