SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – A man who was dumpster diving in 2005 made a grisly discovery.
David Wenerstrom was looking for valuables, but when he opened a dark plastic bag he was shocked to find a female human body.
“That’s when I seen her back,” Wenerstrom told ABC4 in 2005. “I didn’t believe that’s what it was. But I don’t know. It’s something, that a chill ran through my body.”
She was later identified as 22-year-old Sheree Allen. Her mother said her daughter had been living on her own.
“I was shocked and surprised,” said Lillie Allen. “I didn’t want to hear that. Who would do something like that and why?”
Her mother said Allen was a mother of two sets of twins who were placed into state custody and have since been adopted.
Sheree Allen also had a criminal history of drugs and prostitution.
“She was a good girl,” said her mother. “She just got into the wrong crowd got hooked up with some people she shouldn’t have.”
The Utah Cold Case Coalition said West Valley police zeroed in on two persons of interest, but the investigation stopped.
“One of the principal persons of interest was dating Sheree at the time,” said Karra Porter with the coalition. “There were witnesses who said that she was in the process of leaving him and he was the last person to see her alive that we know of.”
She said that person was Carl Swanigan who died six years ago. Swanigan served time in prison and also fathered six children.
“If he’s involved, he had help getting Sheree’s body into the dumpster,” said Porter.
The coalition wants to know who helped put Allen’s body in the dumpster.
They are also seeking information about a man named “Pops” who once lived at the All-Star Motel in Salt Lake City back in 2005.
All this in hopes of giving a mother peace of mind.
“It no matter how bad or how good a person is, that’s not the way to kill or do somebody,” said Lillie Allen. “That was my daughter. Nobody deserves to be put in, hogtied and put in garbage bags and be thrown in a dumpster like trash.”
Swanigan had a reputation for being violent. Now that he’s dead, Porter hopes someone with information will come forward and help solve the case.
The coalition is offering a $3,000 reward leading to an arrest and/or conviction.