A young stripper who struggled with drug addiction has been identified as the murder victim whose remains were found in a garbage bag in Lake Worth.
Tiffany Nelson, 20, of the 600 block of L Street in Lake Worth, was named as the victim in the homicide by the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office on Thursday.
Sheriff's deputies responded to a call of a suspicious odor in the 1300 block of South L Street in Lake Worth the morning of Oct. 29. They arrived to find what appeared to be human remains wrapped in a garbage bag in front of an abandoned house.
"We're hoping that if anyone knows anything, to call Crime Stoppers," said Teri Barbera, spokeswoman for the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.
Barbera said Sheriff's detectives were still trying to piece together more information about the victim on Thursday.
"Now we're at the point of seeking different individuals who may have known her and we're trying to learn more about her," Barbera said.
The remains were transported to the medical examiner's office, where an autopsy was conducted.
The cause of death was found to be homicide, but no further information was released. Nelson's family has been notified, a Sheriff's spokeswoman said.
According to her Facebook page, Nelson was an entertainer and model at T's Lounge in West Palm Beach. She also attended the Florida Culinary Institute and had posted about her intention to stay sober.
"SOBER & FEELING BETTER THEN EVER!" reads the 'about' section on Nelson's Facebook profile. "I am and will forever just be me, smart excited maybe a little crazy at times always smiling and laughing I love to travel and I love god. But being clean is the most important thing."
It was not clear when Nelson posted the message. Photographs posted in July 2011 show happier times.
In one picture, Nelson is riding a horse on a beach. In another, she is surrounded by family members, all of whom are smiling.
Reached by phone, Nelson's ex-boyfriend declined to speak with a reporter. Her mother did not respond to a request for an interview.
But in recent months, Nelson had been arrested twice, once for trespassing in May and a second time on Sept. 27 for carrying a crack pipe.
According to the Sept. 27 arrest report, Sheriff's deputies responded to a call of a possible prostitute at Sixth Avenue South and Federal Highway in Lake Worth. Deputies arrived to find Nelson talking to a man in a white Mercedes Benz and about to get into the car.
When a deputy searched Nelson and found a glass pipe, Nelson began to cry and said she had wished she had left the pipe at home, the arrest report stated. She was charged with possession of paraphernalia.
On May 2, a deputy patrolling the 700 block of South H Street in Lake Worth saw a female loitering in front of an apartment building. Nelson was issued a trespassing violation and released, according to an arrest report.
Nelson was later arrested on July 28 and held for two days in custody after failing to appear in court, according to the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.
Anybody who might have information about the homicide is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-458-TIPS.
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