Former Florida School Employee Found Dead With Zip Tie Around Her Neck, Person of Interest Identified, Cops Say

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Aug. 3 2023, Published 12:05 p.m. ET

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A former school employee was found dead inside her Florida home with a zip tie around her neck and investigators have now ruled her death a homicide, according to authorities.

On July 17, police found 49-year-old Joysee Cartagena dead with a zip tie around her neck inside her Sanford home, WKMG reported.

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Sanford police first received information that Cartagena’s death might have been a suicide. After more investigation, they’re now ruling her death a homicide, officials said.

Officials are not releasing how Cartagena was killed, but they did say they have a person of interest who has not been arrested.

Bianca Gillett, public information officer with Sanford Police Department, told WKMG, “As of this point it appears the victim and the person of interest were known to each other.”

Seminole County Public Schools told WKMG Cartagena was an employee at the district from 2015 to 2022, including working as a secretary at Spring Lake Elementary School.

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Cartagena’s son, who is set to graduate from the University of Central Florida in the fall, told WKMG, “She was a sweet woman. She wasn’t the type of person to have enemies.”

Police said that once the full autopsy is complete, it will determine the manner in which Cartagena died.


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