Missing pregnant woman found dead in Philadelphia; boyfriend named person of interest

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A missing pregnant woman from Delaware County, Pennsylvania was found dead in a wooded area of Southwest Philadelphia on Monday night. The victim's boyfriend is now a person of interest in the case.

Twenty-one-year-old Dianna Brice of Lansdowne, Pa. was last seen on Tuesday, March 30.

Brice's mother, Betty Cellini, said her daughter had a young son and was 14 weeks pregnant. Brice also had a life-threatening medical condition that required medication.

Tim Bernhardt, the Superintendent of Upper Darby Police Department, said the case that had investigators pounding the pavement for days finally has some answers.

"It's terrible. Words don't express how sad it is for a young woman who leaves behind a 4-year-old child and was three to four months pregnant with her second, words don't explain how sad it is for her and her family," Bernhardt said.

Action News was there Monday night as police searched the scene where the body was found in the area of 58th Street and Lindbergh Boulevard.

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Officials say 21-year-old Dianna Brice went missing on Tuesday, March 30, and was last seen at K Laundry with her boyfriend, 23-year-old Justin Smith.

Brice and her boyfriend, 23-year-old Justin Smith, were last seen at K Laundry in Yeadon on March 30 around 1 p.m.

Before the woman vanished, Cellini said the couple was involved in an argument.

"He goes, 'She don't want to even talk to me.' I said, 'I don't care, she's pregnant with your child,'" recalled Cellini.

The car of Dianna Brice's boyfriend, Justin Smith, found engulfed in flames as a missing persons investigation is opened for the couple.

Smith's 2018 black Ford Fusion was later found engulfed in flames in the area of 59th and Florence streets in Philadelphia. The car was found about a mile from where police said the body was discovered in the woods.

Investigators believe Smith's wallet and keys were found nearby. Smith is still being sought at this time.

The Philadelphia Crime Scene Unit is examining both the Ford Fusion and a second vehicle, a 2020-21 white Hyundai Sonata, in connection with the investigation.

Though police could not comment, Cellini claims Smith has had prior run-ins with the law.

"I want justice served, that's all I want," Norman Passarella, Brice's uncle, said. "I want justice served and everything done."

Left: Dianna Brice / Right: Justin Smith

Anyone with any information on Smith's whereabouts is asked to call police.

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