Lynnwood woman was strangled
Seattle Times staff reporters
A Lynnwood woman whose body was found Monday in a wooded area near Burien was strangled, the King County Medical Examiner's Office announced Wednesday.
Several King County Sheriff's homicide detectives have been working the case "virtually nonstop" since the body of Nicole Pietz was found around 1 p.m. Monday, two blocks west of South 144th Street and Des Moines Memorial Drive South, said King County Sheriff's Sgt. John Urquhart.
Pietz was reported missing Jan. 29 after she didn't show up for a personal meeting and then didn't show up for work. Pietz's gray 2003 Volkswagen Jetta, with the license plate 991-TEF, has not been found.
"That's our big thing now — trying to find her car," Urquhart said.
Detectives are also working to develop a timeline to determine Pietz's whereabouts after she disappeared, he said.
Pietz's stepfather, Rod Schneider, said he doesn't know why anyone would want to hurt his stepdaughter.
"She loved her job, loved her husband, loved her pets," he said. "It's in the hands of the King County detectives, and I'm sure they're very competent."
Pietz worked at Cingular Wireless in Bothell and was involved in training, where she met and was liked by many people, Schneider said.
Pietz, who would have been 33 on Feb. 2, grew up on the Eastside and graduated from Lake Washington High School, Schneider said.
People shared memories and condolences on a message board on a Web site — www.findnici.com — which was originally set up to help find Pietz.
"She always had a smile on her face and just simply had great energy and enthusiasm with everything," one person wrote Tuesday.
A memorial service is planned for 4 p.m. Sunday at the Episcopal Church of the Holy Cross, 11526 162nd Ave. N.E., Redmond.
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