Missing Homer woman presumed dead after grand jury vote

Published: Jul. 11, 2021 at 9:50 AM AKDT|Updated: Jul. 12, 2021 at 11:27 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Her body has yet to be found but Anesha ‘Duffy’ Murnane, who went missing nearly two years ago from Homer, is presumed dead. A grand jury determined Murnane died by homicide after a day of testimony in June.

Duffy’s mother, Sara Berg, said she filed the presumptive death petition so the family can start getting Murnane’s affairs in order, which can’t be done without a death certificate.

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“There’s always hope, but with the amount of woods and the amount of ocean in Alaska, there’s very little chance we’re going to find that body,” Berg said. “I do like to hope that that will happen, but I have to be a realist and I don’t think it’s going to happen.”

The jury also had the option to choose “death by unknown causes.” Berg says she and her husband were surprised by the verdict but pleased with it since the family has believed for a while that Duffy had been killed.

“I just felt very good about it. I felt validated,” Berg said. “I know she was murdered. I know that, and to have six other people say, ‘yes, that’s true,’ it just validates me. It made me feel really good.”

Berg says it’s still hard to wrap her mind around what happened to her daughter.

“I still sometimes don’t think it’s real. I mean it’s Homer. How could it be real in Homer? Especially at noon. It just doesn’t make any sense at all,” she said. “I’d think you’d be absolutely perfectly safe at noon in Homer walking through downtown.”

Homer Police Department Chief Mark Robl said the agency is still investigating Murnane’s case and is still treating her as a missing person.

Editor’s note: The story was updated to include a response from the Homer Police Department.

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