Missouri woman accused of abandoning man’s corpse

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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) – A 55-year-old woman has been charged with abandonment of a corpse after a decaying body was found in a Columbia apartment.

Prosecutors filed the charge Tuesday against Deborah Berardi, of Columbia, who is jailed in Boone County on $20,000 bond. No attorney is listed for her in online court records.

Columbia police said in a news release that her arrest Tuesday night during a traffic stop on Interstate 70 came one day after the body of 60-year-old Steven Summa was discovered. The probable cause statement said he appeared to have been dead several days before an employee of a property management company found his body.

Police said that preliminary autopsy results didn’t indicate foul play. Toxicology results are pending.

Berardi listed Summa as her spouse on a utility account.
Information from: Columbia Daily Tribune, http://www.columbiatribune.com