Woman with Scorpion Tattoo Who Was Found Brutally Murdered in 1991 Identified by Authorities

The identity of a 1991 murder victim has been identified with the help of forensic technology after more than a 30-year investigation 

Investigators shed new light on death of Christine Belusko
Photo: cbs ny

The identity of a 1991 murder victim known for her distinctive scorpion tattoo has been revealed.

Alongside officials from the New York Police Department, the FBI and the New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner, Richmond County District Attorney Michael E. McMahon revealed that the body's identity was that of Christine Belusko of Morris County, New Jersey.

"Today we want to speak about the case of the girl with the scorpion tattoo," explained McMahon during a press conference on Tuesday. "This is a story about a brutal and depraved murder — depraved acts of violence that killed this young girl in her prime, and the dumping of her body in a lonely and desolate field on the East Shore of Staten Island exactly 31-and-a-half years ago."

Her identity was discovered using forensic genealogy technology that was unavailable at the time of her death in September 1991.

Authorities were also assisted in discovering her identity by the dress she wore at the time of her death that was connected to a clothing shop she worked at in New Jersey, shared McMahon.

Officials shared that work on the cold case began again in 2019, and authorities were able to make a positive match in April 2021. After further investigation, authorities learned that Belusko had a brother, who was also made aware of the discovery.

"Not only were we able to determine the identity of the victim, but we also determined that Christine had a daughter, Christa Nicole, who was approximately 2 years old at the time of Christine's murder," explained McMahon.

Authorities shared an age progression photo of Christa Nicole during Tuesday's conference, as her whereabouts currently remain unknown. While authorities have identified Belusko's body, they add that no suspect is in custody and ask the public to assist with any information that may lead to a suspect.

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Belusko was "discovered face-up, handcuffed, and her body was burned. She died as a result of over 17 blows to her head, and she was also strangled," shared David J. Nilsen, Chief Investigator for the Richmond County District Attorney's office.

"Given the facts of the case and what transpired, and the way in which she was murdered, it does not seem random," McMahon added. "This was someone who knew her. It's an intimate type of murder."

"If you have any information regarding Christine Belusko or her daughter, Christa Nicole, please call 718-556-7085 or email us at info@rcda.nyc.gov," the DA's office said in a social media update after Tuesday's conference.

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