The facts surrounding the death of a woman found burned in a car at Clinton Lake remain a mystery as investigators wait for a final autopsy report.
"We don't have the results back from the county coroner's office yet," Lt. Kari Wempe of the Douglas County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday. "When we do, I'm hoping that will give the detectives guidance as to the cause."
Carolyn Bower, 40, Olathe, was found dead April 30 inside a badly burned Mazda near Rock Creek boat ramp at Clinton Lake. A passerby had called police to report seeing a car on fire.
It took the sheriff's office much of the following week to identify the car and her body, and it's still not known whether the death was the result of suicide, foul play or an accident.
According to court records, Bower recently had been through a divorce and had accused her husband of failing to make required payments. She also was on probation for a prescription-fraud charge in Johnson County.
Amy Rogers, a friend who used to wait tables with Bower in Olathe, said she had no idea why Bower would be in the Lawrence area and was clueless about what may have led to the death.
"It all sounds very fishy to me," she said.
She said she had been friends with Bower for about a year and a half. The two used to shop, get their nails done, watch movies and attend sporting events for Bower's teenage children.
She said Bower had been under stress in recent months and that her condition had "spiraled downhill," but she would not elaborate.
Coroner Erik Mitchell is referring all questions about the case to the sheriff's office, which is not releasing details of what its investigation has found so far.