Family of Eaton Co. homicide victim seeks justice


After a year of searching for their loved one, one family is getting some answers. Now, they’re seeking justice.

“I’ve sat and waited and waited and waited,” said Valentina Hunt.

A​​fter a year of waiting, her 35-year-old niece Stephanie Southwell, a mother of two, never came home.

“She was very friendly,” said Hunt. “She wasn’t afraid of anybody.”

Soon, Valentina Hunt found out why Southwell never returned home. The Eaton County Sheriff’s Office announced in March that someone found a body.

“I thought, that’s so horrible,” said Hunt. “Then the next time it was, oh it’s a female and I’m like, oh that’s someone’s daughter out there, ya know, that’s horrible.”

A friend sent Valentina sent a picture of the shoes the victim was wearing. A picture released by the sheriff’s office.

“My 15-year-old son walked by and seen them on my computer screen and asked me, mom, why is Steph posting pictures of her dirty shoes, don’t she know she could put them in the washing machine.”
Hunt then contacted the Sheriff’s office.

“I just thought, cause they hadn’t got back ahold of me that maybe the DNA didn’t match,” said Hunt. “I figured no news was good news.”

Earlier this week she found out the victim was Stephanie and she doesn’t know why this happened to her.

“If anybody that knows anything call, she has two beautiful babies,” said Hunt. “They don’t even know where she’s gone, they don’t… God, I don’t know who would do that to anybody.”

If you know anything that could help police solve this case call Crime Stoppers at 517-483-STOP. You don’t have to leave your name.

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