CHICAGO (STMW) — The body found bound and beaten to death inside a plastic container in the Far South Side Roseland neighborhood has been identified as a missing northwest Indiana woman.

The remains were discovered about 4:20 p.m. in the 10000 block of South Normal Avenue, police News Affairs Officer Darryl Baety said.

The victim, tentatively identified as 26-year-old Cynthia Funches of Highland, Ind., died of multiple blunt force injuries from an assault, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

An autopsy Thursday ruled her death a homicide, according to the medical examiner’s office.

Dr. Ariel Goldschmidt, who performed the autopsy, said tattoos were used for the identification as well as “articles” found with the body.  The doctor said it was not certain as of Thursday afternoon how long Funches had been dead.

The doctor would not comment on whether she’d been sexually attacked but said tests were being done. Funches was fully clothed, and it was not known what, if any, weapon was used.

Her body was wrapped in plastic bags and found inside a plastic storage container, with her legs and hands bound with duct tape, according to the doctor.

Highland police said Funches lived in an apartment at 9509 Southmoor in the Hampton in Highland complex.

A friend, who had not been able to reach Funches by phone, called police about a welfare check at 8 p.m. Wednesday, the Post-Tribune is reporting. Police found blood in the apartment and noticed that a mattress was missing.

Shortly afterward, Chicago Police detectives contacted Highland saying the body matched the description of Funches.

Highland Police Cmdr. George Georgeff said police are operating under the assumption that the murder occurred in Indiana. Based on evidence, police believe Funches knew her attacker.

Anyone with information about the case should call Highland police at (219) 838-3184.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2010. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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