Maryland State Police announced Sunday that the body of a Stevensville woman missing for three weeks has been found in the Chesapeake Bay.
The body of Robin Pope, 51, was discovered in the water along the shore of Kent Island around 3:30 p.m. on Saturday by a man fishing on a pier less than a mile from the home where she was reportedly last seen on March 1.
State and local law enforcement secured the scene around the body before removing it from the water shortly before 6 p.m., according to Maryland State Police. The identification was made through dental records during an autopsy conducted Sunday.
The cause and manner of death have not been identified at this time. Forensic pathologists with the Maryland Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will continue to investigate the case, state police spokesman Greg Shipley said in a press release.
Authorities have not yet determined why or how Pope disappeared, Shipley said Saturday, and the state police homicide unit is still investigating. Robin was reported missing by her husband Wayne Pope around 2 a.m. on March 2.
The couple had separated a few weeks earlier and Robin was staying at a friend’s condo, her daughter told HLN. According to state police, Wayne Pope said Robin had come back to their house around 11 p.m. on March 1 to pick up some of her belongings, and he left her alone to do that.
Police said Pope reported that when he returned home about two hours later, Robin and their Great Dane, Bella, were both gone but her car was still there. The dog’s body was found in the water near the house later in the day on March 2. Although Wayne Pope’s attorney told HLN Bella died from hypothermia, Shipley said the dog’s cause of death was undetermined.
Priscilla Hastings, Robin Pope’s daughter, said that her mother’s purse and phone were left behind in her car, along with medication she was taking after treatment for breast cancer. Pope’s best friend, Debbie O’Malley, called her disappearance “suspicious.”
Police conducted extensive searches by land, air and water over the last three weeks, and volunteers had also been searching the area daily. Robin Pope’s daughters told HLN that a shirt believed to belong to her was found near the area where the dog’s body was discovered, but police would not confirm that.
Wayne Pope’s attorney, Dana Paul, did not respond to a request for comment on the discovery of the body Monday.
Anyone with information regarding Robin Pope’s disappearance or death is asked to contact the Maryland State Police at 410-758-1101.