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Bones are of missing woman; Police record in Fitchburg.

Byline: George Barnes; Anna L. Griffin

FITCHBURG - The skeletal remains of a woman found Thursday in a wooded area in the rear of the 600 block of Water Street are those of Sharon Norris, 46, a Water Street resident who was last seen two years ago.

Ms. Norris, also known as Sharon Kuykendall, was last seen in August 2006. Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr. said the remains, discovered by children between Water Street and Duck Mill Road, were identified by investigators using dental records.

The office of the chief medical examiner has been examining Ms. Norris' remains in an effort to determine the cause and manner of her death.

The district attorney's office is not yet prepared to say whether Ms. Norris' death was a homicide, but police are treating the area where the remains were found as a crime scene.

Ms. Norris was known to Fitchburg police and had convictions on her record for a variety of offenses, including possession of cocaine, larceny by false pretenses and uttering a forged instrument.

Timothy J. Connolly, a spokesman for Mr. Early's office, would not comment about Ms. Norris' life or whether her death is linked to the discovery of skeletal remains of several women found in Fitchburg and other communities in Central Massachusetts.

The state police detectives investigating the discovery of Ms. Norris' remains are in the same group that is investigating the discovery of other women's remains in Fitchburg, Hudson, Marlboro, Rutland and Westminster.

In May, investigators from three district attorneys' offices, authorities from Maine and several Central Massachusetts police departments met to discuss the deaths of the women, many of whom were prostitutes. Alex F. Scesny of Berlin has been named as a person of interest in several of the deaths, including the death of Theresa K. Stone, who was found strangled near Kinsman Road in Fitchburg.

Mr. Scesny also is a person of interest in the deaths of five women known to have worked as prostitutes in the Main South section of Worcester. The remains of three of the women were found in Marlboro and Hudson, one in Rutland and one in York, Maine.

Mr. Scesny is scheduled to go on trial Sept. 15 on charges of raping and assaulting a woman last year in a West Boylston motel. He is charged with sexually assaulting the woman and trying to smother her with a pillow. He maintains his innocence in the West Boylston case and denies any link between himself and the murders. He has not been charged in any of the cases involving the missing women.

Fitchburg Police Chief Robert A. DeMoura also would not comment on Ms. Norris' background. He also would not speculate whether her death and the deaths of other women in the region were linked.

"It's too early to say at this time whether or not this is related to other cases," he said. "But the same team working on those cases has this information in front of them."

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Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Date:Jul 23, 2008
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