LANCASTER, Pa. - The search for a killer is on as investigators seek clues in the killing of a missing Berks County woman.
Authorities confirmed Monday night that the body found in Clay Twp., Lancaster Co., was that of Ashley Kline.
"You just cannot let it go. She is been a big part of all our lives for 23 years and we expect her to be here for forever, but she is not," said Kline's father, Michael Kline, speaking with 69 News just hours before he learned the body had been identified as that of his daughter.
Kline said his daughter was a loving and responsible young woman who was also well known in the community.
"It is tragic. Everyone is wondering who did this and was it someone here or outside," said Kathie Hersey, of Robesonia. "How could this happen to her?"
State police are trying to answer that question. Kline left her home on Robeson Street in Robesonia on Dec. 30. Her body was found Jan. 12.
Investigators told 69 News that Kline suffered severe trauma and that the coroner needed dental records to help identify her.
"She was a living, breathing human and she did not have a right to end up like this. It is horrific, it is criminal and we have a responsibility to do everything we can to solve it," said Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman.
Investigators have no leads and they said they need the public's help.
"I am also sure that there are individuals out there that know about this, and obviously the killer or killers know what they did. We would encourage them to come in, come forth to police, rather than waiting for us to find them because we will find them," said Stedman.
The coroner has ruled Kline's death a homicide. Authorities said they know her body was in Clay Township for several days before she was found, but they declined to release any additional details about the extent of her injuries.
If you know anything that can help police find the person responsible for Kline's death, call Crime Alert Berks County at 877-373-9913. If your tip leads to an arrest, you could receive a cash reward of up to $10,000.
Meantime, the manager of the Sunoco convenience store at 159 W Penn Ave. in Robesonia is hoping the community will come together to help Kline's family.
She is taking up a collection to cover funeral costs. A bake sale is also being planned for Friday, starting at 8 a.m. You can stop by the Sunoco this week to donate money or baked goods.
The manager said all of the money will go to the Kline family.
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