Body found in Wolcott identified as missing Waterbury woman, death ruled homicide

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WOLCOTT, Conn. (WTNH) — Police announced Wednesday that they have identified the body found in Wolcott on Tuesday as 26-year-old Janet Avalo-Alvarez.

RELATED: Police have named Waterbury man as person of interest in his girlfriend, business partner’s disappearance

Officers said Avalo-Alvarez’s body was found in a wooded area in the 200 block of Wolcott Road, roughly 50 yards off the roadway.

The body was found just before 5:30 p.m. during an investigation headed by the Waterbury Police Department.

Related: Vigils held for slain Waterbury woman, body found in Wolcott woods

On Wednesday afternoon, Waterbury police positively identified the body as Avalo-Alvarez during a news conference. Officers revealed that forensic evidence helped them with the identification.

WEB EXTRA: Waterbury Police announce that body found in Wolcott woods Tuesday is that of Avalo-Alvarez

Police have ruled her death a homicide. According to the medical examiner’s report, Avalo-Alvarez died of “neck compression.”

Officers say that extensive surveillance footage helped them locate Avalo-Alvarez’s body a mile over the Waterbury line into Wolcott.

Officers said they’re working with U.S. Marshalls to locate Avalo-Alvarez’s boyfriend, Alfredo Esmerli-Peguero-Gomez, who has been named a suspect in her death.

Gomez, who has dual citizenship in the Dominican Republic and U.S. and whose car was found last Wednesday at Newark Airport in New Jersey, was originally named a person-of-interest in her disappearance on Tuesday.

Friends described their relationship as ‘up and down’ and that they seemed to argue a lot. Police say they don’t have any record of domestic violence investigations for either Avalo-Alvarez or Gomez and that Gomez has no prior record to their knowledge.

Police believe Gomez has left the state, but do not yet know his whereabouts.

The pair co-own La Guakara Taina, a bar/club in Waterbury.

On Wednesday morning, friends and neighbors held a vigil for Avalo-Alvarez at La Guakara Taina.

The investigation is ongoing.

Any info the public has can be called in to the Waterbury Police at 203-574-6941, or anonymously on the Crime Tipline 203-755-1234 or email


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