3 charged with murder of Missouri woman in Belize

September 03, 2018 - 12:45 pm

PUNTA GORDA, Belize (AP) — Three people have been arrested and charged with murder in the death of a 68-year-old Missouri woman who retired to the coast of Belize, authorities in the Central American nation said Monday.

The body of Sherris Stringham was found late Friday near a river in Pomona, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) from where she lived in the Caribbean village of Hopkins, police spokeswoman Hortence Hernandez said in a statement.

The suspects were identified as two 18-year-old men and a 16-year-old minor, all from Hopkins.

Police said Stringham was reported missing Aug. 27, and her vehicle was found abandoned days later hundreds of miles away in the Orange Walk district in the northern part of the country.

No motive has been confirmed, but robbery was suspected.

The Kansas City Star reported that Stringham was a native of Blue Springs, Missouri, which is on the eastern outskirts of Kansas City.

According to a GoFundMe page that family members set up last week to help fund the search for her, Stringham was last heard from on Aug. 25. She was said to have missed several appointments with friends, and her house was discovered "in disarray" with her wallet empty and car missing.

The GoFundMe page says that she retired to Hopkins last year after decades working as a school bus driver and grocery checker.