JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate the death of a 27-year-old woman after her body was found in a retention pond in the Sandalwood area on Wednesday afternoon.
Teresa Gorczyca’s body was found in a retention pond three days after she was reported missing.
In a statement, Gorczyca’s sister, Kimberly Hickey, said: “We are all grieving the loss of Teresa. Our hearts are shattered, and we are grief stricken. The pain that we’re feeling of having her ripped from our lives in unimaginable. Everyone who has ever met her says the same thing: She has an inviting & warm spirit, a great sense of humor, and a kindness that isn’t seen often enough in this world. She has touched the hearts of so many and will be terribly missed. We thank the entire community & JSO for all they’ve done in helping locate Teresa. Now we are just praying for answers, closure and peace.”
The family of Teresa Gorczyca reported they last saw her Sunday afternoon.
The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said because of circumstances involved in her disappearance, officers were trying to find her to see if she was okay.
The investigation led detectives to a suburban retention pond in the Sutton Lakes subdivision, where divers spent days searching for evidence.
Many of the houses on the road leading to the pond have surveillance cameras, and some neighbors told News4Jax they gave the footage to the Sheriff’s Office.
One resident told News4Jax a video recorded on their camera Sunday showed a man and a woman heading toward the pond while they were arguing and pushing. About 20 minutes later, the man could be seen walking in the opposite direction alone without a shirt and shoes, the resident said.
“That’s someone’s child and that’s what I think bothers me more than anything,” said neighbor Anthony Spears.
Spears lives a few doors down from the retention pond.
“It was really concerning. We do walk the neighborhood periodically and, of course without any information, it is a tad worrisome when a body is found, you know, literally steps from your driveway,” Spears said.
He describes the neighborhood as quiet and safe.
“The amount of officers that we saw yesterday probably in total outnumber the amount of police activity we’ve seen in the neighborhood in the four years that we’ve been here,” he said.
JSO said Wednesday it was treating the pond as a crime scene and didn’t have any updates on the investigation on Thursday.
There was also no word from the medical examiner’s office on how Gorczyca died.
JSO is anyone who has any information about the disappearance and/or death of Gorczyca is asked to contact the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office at 904-630-0500 or email them at JSOCrimeTips@jaxsheriff.org. JSO says to remain anonymous and receive a possible reward up to $3,000, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.