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Manteca Woman Found Dead

A Manteca woman, 22-year-old Kelly Marelich, was found dead March 15 in a dumpster behind a business along South Main Street.

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pacific express innMANTECA-

Manteca Police have made a step in solving the murder of 22-year-old Kelly Marelich, the girl found dead in a dumpster on South Main Street.

Police say surveillance video from above the dumpster and a tip led them to serve a search warrant Wednesday at Pacific Express Inn off of Moffat Boulevard.

They believe Marelich was there when she died, then put in the dumpster afterwards.

Police are also looking into someone she knew, they do not believe it was a random person who killed her.

If you have any information that could help police solve this case, you are asked to call them at (209) 456-8210 or (209) 823-4636.


The San Joaquin Sheriff’s Department announced the identity of the woman found dead Saturday in an alleyway dumpster.

Kelly Darlene Marelich was 22 years old, originally from Manteca. Her family’s home is just a four-minute drive from where her body was found, in a dumpster between H&R Block and Big 5 Sporting Goods off South Main Street.

Marelich’s neighbors said she grew up in a nice, quiet family. She was attending college, hoping to become a lawyer.

FOX40 found one surveillance camera right above where Marelich’s body was found. The building’s owners said they have turned over their footage to the Manteca Police Department.

The San Joaquin County coroner has not released the cause of death.


Photo of Kelly Marelich provided by the Department of Motor Vehicles


The San Joaquin County Sheriff’s Department identified the body that was found over the weekend in a dumpster.

Kelly Marelich, 22, was discovered Saturday in a dumpster behind some stores along South Main Street.

READ: Friends say Kelly Marelich Aspired to be a Lawyer

Police say Marelich was dead of an apparent homicide, though her exact cause of death has yet to be released.

Businesses in the area say that alley where the dumpster is located has been a problem.


The body of a young woman was found in a dumpster Saturday in Manteca.

“This is kind of a sleepy town. I mean, everyone kind of lives here with their families. There’s a lot of kids that go to schools and it just doesn’t seem like it would happen here,” Michelle Elder said.

Elder can’t believe what police say was left in a dumpster just steps away from the Family Christian Store where she works in Manteca.

Almost 48 hours after the gruesome Saturday night discovery, investigators revealed they’re looking into who killed an 18-25 year old woman and dumped her body behind some stores along South Main Street.

According to Elder, the back alley behind her row of businesses has been a problem.

“We know there have been some shady characters back there.  They tell us women not to take the trash out by ourselves,” she said.

Workers in the area say there have been rapes in years past.

Two months ago Elder’s part of the shopping plaza lost power because some homeless vandals used this alley to break into an electrical room and trip a switch.

Now detectives are trying to identify the woman left dead there and those responsible.

So far, no suspect description’s been released.

The victim is white, five foot 5, about 130 pounds with brown hair and blue eyes.

“This town…I felt pretty safe and I don’t want to not feel safe and I just feel like that’s something that shakes you up  and it’s just tragically sad.  I don’t want to not feel safe in my own little town,” said Elder.

Anyone with any formation about what happened Saturday night is asked to call Manteca police.