Woman found dead near train tracks
by Steve Paradis, Herald Staff
Feb 21, 2007 | 856 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
SANFORD — A CSX railroad worker found the body of a 39-year-old woman Tuesday morning between a dumpster and train tracks near 13th Street and Elm Avenue.

Sanford police and Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigators are treating the case as a homicide.

The woman was identified as Lisa Marie French. She turned 39 on Feb. 13 and her last known address was in Casselberry.

Sanford police spokeswoman Cleo Cohen said French had 19 different booking case numbers, many on prostitution charges. French was last arrested in Sanford on Sept. 26, 2006, for loitering and prowling. She has several arrests for prostitution and one for grand theft auto in 2003.

An address she often gave was Timberlane Trail in Casselberry where police believe her parents live, Cohen said.

The railroad worker discovered French’s body around 7:20 a.m., Cohen said.

“The situation was over with when they found her,” Cohen said, meaning she had already died.

An autopsy is expected in Volusia County on Wednesday, she added. Seminole County does not have a medical examiner.

Cohen could not confirm neighborhood reports that French had been beaten.

There are no suspects yet, she said, but the case is under investigation by the FDLE.

People routinely use the train tracks to cut across east and west between Elm and U.S. 17-92. CSX only carries freight on the tracks once or twice a week and the trains move very slowly. On Tuesday, the freight train was headed out of Sanford toward eastern Seminole County, Cohen said.

French’s body was found behind Rich Plan foods and Todd’s Tomatoes just a few feet from a dumpster on the Elm Street side, Cohen said. The location is just south of 13th Street.