Anniston police on Tuesday said cell phone data led them to the area of Cleburne County where they discovered the body of an Anniston woman missing since June 24.
Anniston police Capt. Allen George said that authorities followed the data to Cleburne County Road 24 on Monday, where they discovered the body of 45-year-old Margie Mize based on cell phone records obtained during the investigation. Though the area where Mize’s body was found was not pinpointed by her cellular data, George said, a gut feeling prompted him to begin searching the ravines nearby.
“Based on everything I saw at the scene it’s just a traffic accident,” said George. “Two passenger-side wheels dropped off the shoulder, which is not a wide area. There is not a lot of room to react.”
On Monday, Anniston police positively identified Mize’s Nissan Sentra at the scene. According to George, the vehicle and crash scene remained covered on Monday due to the graphic nature of the incident.
According to Sgt. Steve Jarrett, a spokesman for the Alabama Department of Public Safety, the car Mize was driving overturned and struck a tree around 7:30 p.m. the day she was reported missing. On Tuesday, state troopers confirmed the body found in the car was Mize.
Mize’s close friends said that she traveled Cleburne County 24 often.
“It was a road that she drove frequently,” said Tracy Denney, Mize’s friend. “Sometimes she would just get out riding with her dog, Katie.”
Denney spent Tuesday with Mize’s mother, who plans to care for her daughter’s dog.
“Margie was my friend for 38 years,” said Denney. “She was a sister to me and a wonderful friend to everyone. I am absolutely devastated.”
Tony Saylor, who knew Mize for nearly 30 years, said that from what he saw at the scene, it appeared that Mize never attempted to follow the road’s curve.
Saylor on Monday lured Mize’s dog out of the woods near the crash site.
“She was soaking wet with really cold water, so there’s obviously a creek nearby that she had gotten into,” said Saylor. “Margie never had any kids so Katie took the role of her child, more or less. She was just one of those people that would do anything she could to help anybody.”
Staff Writer Tim Steere: 256-235-3551. On Twitter @tsteere_Star.