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Environmentalist Slain, Mutilated

July 2, 1990

RACINE, Wis. (AP) _ Body parts found dumped in two yellow plastic trash bags along a roadway were identified Sunday as the remains of an environmental activist last seen canvassing door-to-door in a rural area.

Sgt. William Vyvyan of the Racine County Sheriff’s Department identified the victim as James Michael Madden, 24, of Whitefish Bay.

Vyvyan said Madden had been soliciting donations for Citizens for a Better Environment when he disappeared last week. He was last seen Wednesday evening in an area of scattered homes and farms.

The garbage bags were discovered by area residents Friday along a highway outside Racine about 2 1/2 miles from where Madden was last seen, authorities said.

″We are just shocked and tremendously saddened. We are numb,″ said Rosemary Oliveira, the environmental group’s state administrative director.

Madden had worked for the group about two months and was ″extremely well- liked,″ she said. ″He was an avid environmentalist. He was very devoted to the cause.″

Asked about the circumstances of the death - an environmentalist found in plastic trash bags - she said authorities had told her the death is not believed to be related to the organization.

″My own feeling is this is some psychopath out there,″ she said.

Madden’s upper torso was found in one bag and his pelvis and legs in another, Vyvyan said. His head and arms have not been recovered, he said.

Authorities have said there were several stab wounds on the body.

Update hourly