ESCONDIDO — The body of 38-year-old Elizabeth Antoinette Perez of Fontana, Calif., was found in a parked car Monday afternoon on the side of the northbound Interstate 5 onramp at El Norte Parkway.
Officials with the Escondido Police Department released the deceased woman’s name on Thursday.
The discovery of the woman led to the closure of the onramp soon after investigators responded to the call at 1:10 p.m. on Monday.
Investigators say the investigation is ongoing. There is no indication of an immediate threat to the public, the news release said.
The woman had an injury to her head and blood on her body, according to Lt. Ed Varso.
They are continuing to work with the medical examiner’s office and forensic unit to determine the cause of death, he added.
On Monday, investigators searched the vehicle, a black Mercury Sable sedan and the surrounding area for evidence.
The initial search didn’t find any weapons in the car, Varso said. “There was nothing obvious when we removed the body,” he added.
At about 6:30 p.m. the vehicle was towed away for further processing.
“We’re just treating it as a death investigation at this point,” Varso said.
A handbag and other personal items were found inside the vehicle.
The car’s driver and passenger side windows were broken. Varso said there was glass in the car and some on the ground but added it would be way too speculative to say how that happened.
The car was not reported stolen, but Varso couldn’t confirm the registered owner of the vehicle was the person inside.
On Monday, Varso described the case as “unusual,” due to the openness of the scene and because of the range of things that could’ve led to this to occur. “A car on the side of a freeway onramp and it’s got some broken windows and this person inside of it that has an injury, we’re still working to determine what it is.”
The investigation is awaiting autopsy results and further forensic investigation of the vehicle.
On Wednesday, Varso said investigators had been speaking to some members of the public who saw the car parked on the onramp.
He said anyone with information on the case can call the TIPS line at (760) 743-8477.
This story has been updated since its original posting.