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VIPD: Security Officer Finds ‘Decomposing Body’ Of Yacht Saleswoman In Luxury SUV At Sunny Isle On Saturday

CHRISTIANSTED — The day after a husband walked into a St. Croix police station and reported his wife missing …

…. A security officer found her body decomposing in a luxury SUV at St. Croix’s most popular shopping mall.

Elizabeth “Liza” Shaller, 47, of Epic Yacht Charters-BVI, was found dead in her “Infinity” vehicle at the Sunny Isle Shopping Center in Castle Coakley about a half hour after midnight Saturday, the Virgin Islands Police Department said.

Liza Shaller of Epic Charters BVI apparently began her romance with the Caribbean in the Bahamas.

“A Ranger American security guard observed a beige Infinity QX4 SUV parked in the parking lot close by the guard booth in the middle of the parking lot about 12:36 a.m. Saturday,” VIPD spokesman Glen Dratte said. “The guard while walking by observed someone in the driver’s seat. The guard struck the window and no one responded so he called 911.”

Police said Shaller’s husband walked in to the Ancilmo Marshal Command in Christiansted to report his wife missing about 11:36 a.m. Friday.

“He said she is an alcoholic and sometimes go on binges,” Dratte said. “The deceased was identified by her husband as 47- year old Elizabeth Shaller. ”

Police converged on the late night scene at Sunny Isle and found “a female whose body was in full decomposition siting in the vehicle drivers seat,” according to the VIPD.

The VIPD auto body repair-wrecker operator was called and he unlocked the vehicle.

The type of vehicle Liza Shaller was driving when she apparently parked … and died.

Shaller’s remains were removed from the SUV and transported to Juan Luis F. Hospital where she was pronounced “dead on arrival.”

Shaller’s husband told police that the last time he saw his wife was on Thursday about 9 a.m, when he left the house. When he returned she was gone.

Shaller’s cause of death is unknown pending a Medical Examiners investigation of the death scene and body.

Not everyone was thrilled with the Virgin Island Free Press’ portrayal of Shaller’s decomposing body as a “rotting corpse” in the headline for our article, though.

“Seriously, I would hope for less sensationalism, and much more class,” reader David W. Snyder wrote. “For a modern news organization in this day of ‘political correctness’ to lead with a headline about a ‘rotting corpse”‘shows an extreme lack of compassion and humanity.

“The person you speak about so callously was someone’s wife and daughter. Your lack of recognition of that pure and simple fact is revolting. I truly hope that no one you care about is ever in a similar circumstance. Please reevaluate how you deal with similar situations in the future. The whole world needs to step up to a higher plane of morality. You can do your part to lead the way. Lead by example!  I do NOT wish for this to be published.”

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy has been reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Caribbean region since 1989. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is originally from Detroit, Michigan.

2 Comments

  1. Jennifer Lieber
    July 16, 2019 at 11:26 AM — Reply

    I find it very disturbing that the title of this article includes “FINDS ROTTING BODY”. Nothing like considering the feelings of family members when writing this. How do you think her husband feels when he sees the headline. Wouldn’t it have been much better and more dignified to write “A DECEASED BODY.” I am her cousin and am disgusted by this headline. Shame on you.

  2. DANIEL F SUMMA
    July 17, 2019 at 10:47 AM — Reply

    This article is very poorly written and has no concern for friends or family members. The type of article that give journalists a bad name.

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