Police can't say how Melanie Koontz died, only that homicide detectives are investigating her death. Sources tell Channel 6 that investigators are interviewing several people they believe are close to the case. They don't have a suspect but say that the public is in no immediate danger.
The Koontz family tells Channel 6 News they still can't believe the news. Police are waiting for the full autopsy results. They hope that will reveal how she died and perhaps answers questions about why she was under the bridge.
Melanie was a 16-year-old girl with a bright future. She did well in class and had an infectious smile.
Melanie was confident enough to mingle with the various high school cliques.
But somehow she ended up dead in the Cole Creek. She was discovered on Tuesday morning and now her family is coming together to find a way out of the unbearable sorrow they feel.
Melanie's family and close friends have pulled together in this tough time, supporting each other and drawing strength from the group.
In school Melanie is described as a classroom leader with an independent streak.
Benson High Principal Anita Baldwin gave reporters a glimpse into Melanie's popularity.
Anita Baldwin says, "She was an outgoing, gregarious young lady and she had the capability of bringing people into her fold and talking with them and moving onto someone else without hanging onto one specific group."
There are still a number of unanswered questions about what happened to Melanie and how she ended up in the Cole Creek.
Her family has some theories but don't want to mess up the police investigation. Other answers may come from the autopsy or toxicology screen.