NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB) - Almost a year has gone by since a mother of three who disappeared was later found dead.
The headless torso of Loretta Gates was found floating in the Niagara River last August. As days went by, additional body parts were found scattered around Niagara Falls.
Gates' heartbroken family continues to seek answers and justice. Though Niagara Falls Police have spoken to dozens of people, no arrest has been made.
Art Gates, Loretta's father, said, "You call the agencies and they say they're working on it and that's about all you hear. It's very frustrating. Very frustrating. You want to hear something, you want them to find something or someone that is involved in this."
A convenience store on the corner of Main and Niagara was the last place Loretta was seen alive. What happened to the 30-year-old mother of three after leaving the store still remains a mystery.
Niagara Falls Detective Lieutenant Michael Trane is leading the investigation. He says one year later, there is still no suspect but this case remains top priority.
"It's a horrific crime and it's rather unusual," he said. "If there was anyone who had first hand knowledge of what may have happened or they heard a story or have a suspicion for one reason or another, that would be great to point us in a direction or lead us to some evidence that we haven't been able to find yet."
News 4 has learned a chainsaw has been turned over to police but it's unclear if or how it was used in the murder.
"We don't know at this time what type of instruments were used in her death, but other than that I don't have any more comments," Det. Lt. Trane said.
Law enforcement sources close to the investigation tell News 4 stories have changed in the last year, including the story from Loretta's own mother, who may have been high the night Loretta disappeared from her home.
"We have spoken to I would say dozens of people about her death about her background, her history a lot of different things," Det. Lt. Trane said, none of whom police could identify as the suspected killer.
Loretta was a recovering drug addict. Her father thought she was on the right track but knew few details of her more personal habits.
"It's tough looking at things like that," Art said.
Loretta's father continues to turn to faith as he hopes and prays his daughter's killer is brought to justice.
Police say even if Loretta lead a high-risk lifestyle, it will not stop them from finding the person who committed this horrible crime.
Authorities would not comment on how close they are to making an arrest.
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