Human skeletal remains found last Thursday afternoon between U.S. Route 50 and SR 124 outside the Hillsboro corporation limits were those of 21-year-old Hillsboro resident Lanessa Roosa, who had been missing since Jan. 1, 2019, according to a news release from Highland County Sheriff Donnie Barrera.
The wooded area behind the Greystone Motel that Roosa was last seen running toward is between U.S. 50 and SR 124.
Highland County Coroner Dr. Jeff Beery said investigators were able to identify Roosa through both dental and DNA records. He said there were skeletal remains and some clothing where Roosa’s remains were found.
A news release from the Highland County Sheriff’s Office last week said a call was received around 3:30 p.m. Thursday from a hunter who said he had discovered what appeared to be skeletal remains in a heavily wooded area.
Beery said last week that the remains were found on top of the ground and that they had not been buried.
After the HCSO received the call last week, detectives and deputies from the sheriff’s office were dispatched to the scene and located what appeared to be skeletal remains, which a news release said would be taken to the Montgomery County Morgue to be processed for identification.
The story of Roosa’s disappearance started in Greenfield on Dec. 31, 2018, when she was arrested by Greenfield police officers after family members had been looking for her for three weeks, Roosa’s mother, Greenfield resident Angela Jordan, previously told The Times-Gazette.
The series of events apparently began in Greenfield, after police officers there picked Roosa up on a warrant and took her to jail.
Sometime the next day Roosa allegedly complained of abdominal pains, was transported by life squad to the Greenfield Area Medical Center, and according to her mother, later walked out of the hospital with her boyfriend.
After leaving the hospital, Roosa asked her boyfriend to take her to Highland District Hospital in Hillsboro, Jordan said, but on the way there she asked to go to the Greystone Motel first to rest and clean up.
After the boyfriend dropped Roosa off, Jordan said he left to repair problems with his vehicle.
Around 5 p.m. that evening, Jordan said she received a phone call from the boyfriend saying Roosa had crawled into a cubbyhole at the motel.
As previously reported, Barrera said that at 5:15 p.m. on Jan. 1, 2019, his office received a call reporting criminal damaging at the Greystone. He said an officer arrived on the scene at 5:26 p.m., and after investigating, determined that Roosa had been crawling through the duct work above motel rooms, fell through the ceiling, refused help from a man in the room she fell into, then took off into the woods near the motel.
According to Barrera, the officer looked around the area for Roosa and talked to witnesses before clearing the scene at 5:42 p.m.
Barrera said that after clearing the scene, the investigating officer spent about 30 minutes driving around the area asking local residents if they had seen a girl wearing a green shirt and blue leggings, but no one reported seeing her.
The next day, Jordan said she, Roosa’s boyfriend, her dad and stepmother searched the woods around the hotel for about four hours but did not find her.
In all, officials said, four large-scale searches were conducted in the woods behind the Greystone after Roosa’s disappearance, several with search dogs. On March 7 a pair of muddy Adidas sneakers and a cell phone, which Roosa allegedly had with her when she disappeared, were found.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522.