Autopsy ordered for woman found dead in Shreveport bayou

Published: Mar. 17, 2016 at 1:42 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 31, 2016 at 1:42 PM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - A Shreveport woman was sitting in a lawn chair outside her fenced backyard, then she wasn't.

Thirty-eight hours later, authorities say, a police officer found 55-year-old Phyllis Lawrence's body in a bayou a few hundred feet from where she lived in the city's Anderson Island neighborhood.

Now the Caddo coroner plans an autopsy to learn how she died.

Caddo Coroner Dr. Todd Thoma "found no obvious signs of foul play, but a final determination of the manner of death is pending the results of the autopsy and routine toxicology tests," says a statement by coroner's office spokesman John Andrew Prime.

Lawrence last was seen alive about 5 p.m. Tuesday at her residence in the 2600 block of East Cavett Drive. That's between Martha Lane and Judith Place and just east of Youree Drive.

Two hours later, Lawrence no longer was there. Her roommate reported having checked for her in the heavily wooded area that slopes steeply to the shoreline of edge of Old River Bayou, Prime's statement says.

Police, notified by the roommate that Lawrence was missing, searched the bayou and neighborhood into the evening Wednesday. An officer who returned Thursday morning to resume the search found Lawrence's body.

Caddo 911 dispatch records show the call came in at 6:58 a.m. Thursday. It initially was reported as Shreveport Fire Department personnel responding to a rescue effort. Shreveport police responded to a citizen assistance call at the same location.

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