Cold Case Spotlight – Theresa Corley

Theresa Corley, 19, left a bar in early December 1978, after an argument with her boyfriend, in Franklin, Massachusetts. While attempting to walk home, Theresa was approached by a group of men and ended up at a party in the Presidential Arms Apartments. It has been reported that Theresa was likely sexually assaulted by the group but was able to get out of the apartment and continue towards her home. Reports indicate that Theresa was last seen within a mile of her house. However, the next morning Theresa’s mom realized she had never made it home. A couple days later, Theresa’s nude body was found on the northbound side of Route 495 in Bellingham, Massachusetts. Her jacket and a pair of jeans were found near her. The discovery of Theresa’s body was made after a man, identifying himself as John Burlington, called Bellingham police, explaining to them that he saw a body when he pulled off the road to use the bathroom. State police now say that Burlington never existed. After almost 39 years there is renewed hope that Theresa’s family may soon get answers. In May, Theresa’s body was exhumed and a State Police chemist collected nine and a half fingernails to analyzed for DNA in hopes of identifying the person(s) responsible for her murder.

Theresa’s sister has fought tirelessly to keep her sister’s memory alive and make sure no one forgets Theresa Corley. The Facebook page Justice for Theresa Corley Belllingham MA 1978 was created to keep pressure on those investigating the case and those involved. Friends, family and supporters of Theresa refuse to give up or let Theresa be forgotten.

If you have any information on the unsolved murder of Theresa Corley, please contact the Bellingham Police tip line at 508-657-2863, or the Franklin Police tip line at 508-440-2780 or tips@franklinpolice.com, or the Norfolk County District Attorney’s tip line at 617-593-8840.

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If you have a loved one that is the victim of an unsolved homicide please submit their case here for consideration in a future Cold Case Spotlight post.