Missing Woman Alana Zuccaro Found Dead in the Woods

Missing Woman Alana Zuccaro Found Dead in the Woods
Victim Alana Zuccaro (L and R headshot), 43, and suspect Robert McPhearson, 33, leaving a casino in Louisiana on March 20, 2019. (St. Landry Parish Sheriff's Office)
Richard Szabo

The body of a Louisiana woman has been found after she was reported missing on March 20.

Pineville Police Department confirmed on April 3 they had located the remains of Alana Michelle Zuccaro, 43, who was last seen driving a 1999 Tan Toyota Tacoma on Masonic Drive in Alexandria, 203 miles northwest of New Orleans.

“Search crews acting on information received have located a body near the Washington area,” the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post. “Zuccaro was located in a wooded area off Highway 103 in Washington, LA. Notification has been made to next of kin.”

The sheriff’s office described the woman as a white female, 5 feet 2 inches tall, 120 pounds, and with medium length dirty blond hair.

West Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office had already arrested suspect Robert McPhearson, 33, for an unrelated offense on March 27.

“During the preliminary investigation, Mr. McPhearson provided West Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office investigators with information relative to murdering Alana Michelle Zuccaro,” St. Laundry Parish Sheriff’s Office said.

Initially McPhearson refused to say where Zuccaro died but eventually revealed the location to police.

“McPhearson provided information to the Pointe Coupee Sheriff’s Office Investigators with the location of Ms. Zuccaro’s body and the circumstances surrounding the murder of Alana Michelle Zuccaro,” the sheriff’s office said. “On April 3, 2019 at 6:45 p.m., the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office along with West Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office and the Pointe Coupee Sheriff’s Office located the body of Alana Michelle Zuccaro.”

Sheriff Bobby J. Guidroz said the grisly find will help give “closure to the Zuccaro family.”

He commended the St. Landry Sheriff’s Office, West Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office, Pointe Coupee Sheriff’s Office, Louisiana State Police Gaming, and the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office for locating the body.

“Agencies have used helicopters, search teams, and K9s to locate Zucarro’s whereabouts and to help bring her home,” St. Landry Sheriff’s Office Deputy Chief Eddie Thibodeaux said in a Facebook post dated April 4.

Concerned citizens, including one of the victim’s family members, thanked authorities on social media for their time and effort in recovering Zucarro’s body.

“St. Landry Crime Stoppers, thank you so much for finding her,” Diane Coker Wiggins said. “It’s a shame for a person so young to die like that. At least the family can have closure.”

“Thank you for sharing my mother’s story we just want to know,” Zucarro’s daughter Laken Masters said.

“Praying for the family may she rest in peace may God welcome her home with open arms,” Larry Bernard Senior said.

Others expressed sympathy for the victim’s family.

“So sad. Prayers for the family and loved ones of this poor person,” Janice Berard said.

“OMG so sad, my prayers or with her family may she rest in peace,” Tessie Mouton said.

The investigation is continuing and people with information are encouraged to download the P3 app or call the Pineville Police Department on (318)442 6603.

“Tap the app on your mobile device to ‘Say It Here’ and submit your anonymous tips,” Thibodeaux said. “Be alert, be safe, and God bless you.”

Richard Szabo is an award-winning journalist with more than 12 years' experience in news writing at mainstream and niche media organizations. He has a specialty in business, tourism, hospitality, and healthcare reporting.
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