Year later, in­ves­ti­ga­tion still open

No new in­for­ma­tion on woman whose de­com­posed body was found in Wil­liams Town­ship home.

The Morning Call - - LOCAL NEWS - By Pamela Lehman and Lau­rie Ma­son Schroeder [email protected] Twit­ter @pame­lalehman 610-820-6790

One year af­ter Jamie Met­zger's badly de­com­posed body was pulled from the base­ment of a Wil­liams Town­ship home, state po­lice say they are still in­ves­ti­gat­ing the New Tripoli woman's death as a pos­si­ble homi­cide.

Lt. Kreg S. Ro­drigues, the com­man­der of Troop M's crim­i­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tions sec­tion, con­firmed that in­ves­ti­ga­tors met last week to dis­cuss the cause of Met­zger's death, a ques­tion that has lin­gered since Dec. 7, 2017, when a man dis­cov­ered her body in a sealed 50-gal­lon plas­tic stor­age bin.

The meet­ing comes on the heels of a story and pod­cast se­ries by The Morn­ing Call which fo­cused on Met­zger's life, dis­ap­pear­ance and the stalled in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

State po­lice Trooper Ryan Seiple, the lead in­ves­ti­ga­tor in Met­zger's death in­ves­ti­ga­tion, said he met with the coro­ner's of­fice Wed­nes­day for an up­date. He re­ferred all other com­ments to Ro­drigues, who said there was no new in­for­ma­tion to re­port, but that au­thor­i­ties would con­tinue to in­ves­ti­gate Met­zger's case as a “homi­cide/sus­pi­cious death.”

Northamp­ton County District At­tor­ney John Mor­ganelli, who is ex­pected to an­nounce the find­ings of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion, said Fri­day “it's un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion,” and de­clined to elab­o­rate.

Met­zger's badly de­com­posed body was found in a bin of a base­ment of a home owned by her boyfriend's fa­ther. Au­thor­i­ties say fam­ily mem­bers of the boyfriend, Carl Maes, have co­op­er­ated with the in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Met­zger was 38 when she went miss­ing in 2014. At the time, she was ad­dicted to drugs and liv­ing a tran­sient life, although her fam­ily said she al­ways kept in con­tact and fre­quently checked in on her chil­dren and ail­ing mother.

Met­zger's dis­ap­pear­ance was in­ves­ti­gated by Al­len­town po­lice, but their find­ings were never made pub­lic. Un­be­knownst to her fam­ily, Met­zger's name was never placed in the Na­tional Miss­ing and Uniden­ti­fied Per­sons Sys­tem data­base, a tool used to lo­cate miss­ing per­sons.

Three years af­ter Met­zger dis­ap­peared, Maes died of a drug over­dose in a Hanover Town­ship, Le­high County, mo­tel. He was 45. Met­zger's fam­ily mem­bers say they be­lieve Maes held the key in de­ter­min­ing ex­actly what hap­pened to her, but he told in­ves­ti­ga­tors that he didn't know where she was. De­tec­tives in­volved in the in­ves­ti­ga­tion de­clined to be in­ter­viewed for the se­ries.

Foren­sic ex­perts in­ter­viewed for the se­ries said they could not un­der­stand why the in­ves­ti­ga­tion is tak­ing so long. Northamp­ton County Coro­ner Zachary Ly­sek de­clined to be in­ter­viewed.

Met­zger and Maes had a vi­o­lent re­la­tion­ship, ac­cord­ing to po­lice and Met­zger's fam­ily. In 2012, Al­len­town po­lice charged Maes with as­sault­ing Met­zger at an Al­len­town bodega. Court records say Met­zger showed bruises on her arms and neck to of­fi­cers who re­sponded to a 911 call at Lib­erty Lunch in Al­len­town. Maes threw punches at of­fi­cers who tried to ar­rest him, court records say, and po­lice found a box cut­ter in his pocket.

Maes pleaded guilty to as­sault­ing Met­zger and was sen­tenced to serve 45 days in jail. Af­ter his re­lease, the cou­ple re­united.

Met­zger's fam­ily said she be­came ad­dicted to painkillers af­ter sev­eral surg­eries that in­cluded a gas­tric by­pass and the re­moval of bulging veins in her legs. Be­fore ad­dic­tion took over her life, Met­zger was out­go­ing, said friends in­ter­viewed for the se­ries. She loved to tell funny sto­ries and sing karaoke.

“She would al­ways make you feel good,” said Becky Wright, who worked with Met­zger. “Just a lov­ing, kind­hearted per­son.”

MORN­ING CALL FILE PHOTO

Jamie Met­zger's badly de­com­posed body was found in a plas­tic stor­age bin in the base­ment of this Wil­liams Town­ship home on Dec. 7, 2017.

Jamie Met­zger

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