Body found in creek may be murder victim

April 29, 2008 8:26:09 PM PDT
Felicia Mikel's family has been without closure for months. "I'm just praying that this is her," said her father, James Mikels.

A woman's body was found floating in the Pennsauken Creek near Route 73 and 5th Avenue.

This is the same area where police were looking earlier this year for 17-year-old Felicia Mikels.

The prosecutor's office said there is a strong possibility the body pulled today from the creek is hers.

"At least then I'll have closure and I can go to the cemetery, because for the last three months I've been going to the creek," said Mikels.

Two men are in custody for her murder. Twenty-five-year-old Douglas Mandichak is charged with beating Mikels to death with a piece of wood in an apparent dispute over money.

Felicia's uncle, Christopher Mikels, is charged as an accomplice to the murder. The men admitted to police that they dumped her body in the creek after they abandoned her infant daughter in a nearby yard, but police called off the search at the end of January.

"It is hard. I was close to my uncle and I was close to my sister," said Laura Huggins, her sister.

Mikels would have turned 18 this past Saturday. The prosecutor's office says the body found today was badly decomposed and was likely in the creek for months. An autopsy will be performed on Wednesday.