Another year has passed since the death of Hughson native Lauren Grace London and her killer has yet to be brought to justice.
March 15 marked the sixth anniversary of the death of the 25-year-old single mom whose burned body was found in a Ceres orchard. The Sheriff’s Department has not made an arrest, much to the frustration of her parents and friends.
In February 2016 then Sheriff Adam Christiansen told the Courier: “We will solve this case but there’s a whole lot more to the story that we simply cannot talk about. I am confident that we will make an arrest in this case but it’s just going to take more time.”
According to Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Sgt. Luke Schwartz, detectives continue to investigate leads in an effort to find out who killed Lauren and left her burned remains on a dirt road between orchards in the 4300 block of Blaker Road across from the Ceres wastewater treatment plant. London’s remains were discovered near a pile of dry pruned branches by a person walking through the orchard on the afternoon of March 16, 2015. A burned furniture dolly was found near the body.
Detectives haven’t said if the discovery site was where the death took place or if she was killed somewhere else and dumped. The Sheriff’s Department has not divulged how London died but stated that the burning of the body showed more aggression than in typical homicides.
“It’s still very much an active and open ongoing investigation,” said Sgt. Schwartz. “The same optimism that Sheriff Christiansen had we still continue to share today. We have to be patient and deliberate. There’s a lot that goes into these homicide investigations. We still have that confidence that an arrest will be made at some point, it’s just that we can’t say definitively when and we don’t to improperly release any kind of details that might compromise the integrity of our case.”
Those who knew Lauren while growing up in Hughson remember her infectious laughter, a woman who didn’t take herself seriously, and a loving person. Those who attended Hughson High School with her up until her 2008 graduation said she was a good volleyball player who made senior class clown in the Huskies yearbook.
Lauren led a troubled life in her later years with drug and alcohol addiction after high school. One friend at her memorial said she met Lauren through Alcoholics Anonymous. Giving birth to daughter Kennidee, she posted on Facebook on June 15, 2013 was “the best thing that has ever happened to me.”
Anyone with information on the homicide or any suspects is urged to contact the Stanislaus County Sheriff’ Crimes against Persons Bureau at 567-4466. Persons with tips may leave an anonymous tip by calling Crime Stoppers at 521-4636 or e-mail tips to http://www.modestopolice.com/CrimeStoppers, or text tips to 274637 and typing “Tip704” plus the message to be eligible for a cash reward.