SANDPOINT, ID – Bonner County Sheriff’s detectives are now treating the death of a Lolo woman as a homicide, after positive identification of her body.
Mirrissa Serrano, 27, vanished a year ago after she walked out of a Lolo bar with a 62-year old man.
Serrano was working at KT’s Hayloft Saloon on the evening shift when she met Daniel Neep. Seemingly on the spur of the moment, her family said she decided to quit and go with Neep.
Neep later told the Spokesman-Review after his arrest on an outstanding warrant, Serrano had returned with him to Spokane, where he had a rented apartment.
He says she then joined him on a trip to his cabin in Lakeview, Idaho, where he says Serrano started talking about coming back to Montana and left him while he was sleeping in his truck.
Serrano’s family stopped receiving her texts on September 14, 2017 and the former University of Montana student was the subject of an extensive and unsuccessful search last fall.
A hunter found remains along a US Forest Service Road on the southeastern shore on Lake Pend Oreille September 27.
That was in the same area where a ground and aerial search involving Two Bear Air of Kalispell took place last fall. Authorities now say testing at the crime lab here in Missoula confirms Serrano’s identity.
“We’re fortunate that we’ve positively identified her. And it’s been treated as a suspicious disappearance/death since basically the beginning of the investigation. Now, this just confirms what our suspicions have led us to believe,” Booner County Undersheriff Ror Lakewold said.
Lakewold says investigators would appreciate hearing from anyone in Lolo that may have information that could help investigators.
“You know, certainly if anybody has any information about the relationship with Mr. Neep — however, we know it was short — if somebody has information we certainly would like to hear about that,” Lakewold said.
“We’ve reached out to a lot of family and friends and gotten the information that was available. But if anybody hasn’t talked to us and has information we certainly like to hear about it,” he added.
Lakewold says detectives are discussing the filing of criminal charges with prosecutors.