The body of a woman found by the side of the road Thursday in Palmetto has been identified as 62-year-old Bernadette Phicien.
Her death is being investigated as a homicide, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.
According to the Bradenton Herald, Phicien – a grandmother of eight – had been beaten to death and was found in her night clothes. The newspaper reported that Phicien, who was originally from Haiti, worked at West Coast Tomato as a produce picker and loved her job.
A couple on their morning walk discovered the woman's body in the 2900 block of 24th Ave. E., Palmetto, at about 6:15 a.m. Thursday.
Phicien, who lived in Palmetto since 2008, was last seen Wednesday night at her home, investigators said.
Because there was trauma to the body, detectives are treating the case as a homicide. An autopsy has been performed but a cause of death will not be released at this time.
Anyone with information on the case is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 941-747-3011 or Crime Stoppers at 866-634-TIPS.