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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Another Woman Strangled in Northeast Moscow

In an ominous reminder of a series of similar murders this summer, a young woman was found strangled to death in northeast Moscow, police said Tuesday.

The body was discovered Monday at about 2 p.m. by a homeless man collecting bottles in the area of Leonovsky Pond.

After finding the corpse about 150 meters from the pond, the man immediately notified the authorities, police said.

Veronika Kharisova, a spokeswoman for the northeast branch of the city police, which is handling the investigation, said the likely scenario was a robbery that turned fatal.

The woman was found fully clothed in a black dress and boots but without a jacket or purse.

Kharisova said it was unlikely that the woman had been sexually assaulted.

She said the woman was aged 20 to 25, about 165 centimeters tall and had light-colored hair.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the victim's identity had not been confirmed, though Kharisova said photographs would be distributed to the media Wednesday in the hope that someone could identify her.

Investigators believe the murder took place late Sunday evening or early Monday morning but are unsure whether the woman was murdered on the spot or dumped there after being strangled somewhere else.

No suspects have been detained.

A wave of unsolved stranglings this summer led to speculation in the media that a serial killer was on the loose.

In July alone, at least 12 women were strangled to death, many of whom were discovered naked or partially naked.

None of them appeared to have been robbed. But authorities have not confirmed any connection between the murders.

Gazeta.ru reported Tuesday that all of the strangling victims so far had been wearing at least one piece of denim clothing: a skirt, pants or a shirt. Kharisova, however, dismissed this claim.

"I was at the crime scene myself," she said.

"The woman had only a black dress on. She was not wearing any denim clothing."

Svetlana Petrenko, a spokeswoman for the city prosecutor's office, said the stranglings will continue to be handled on a case-by-case basis.

"We are of course looking at the possibility of a serial killer, and this incident's connection to other similar murders will be explored," Petrenko said of the latest strangling. "But as of right now there is no reason to combine the investigations."