GIBRALTAR (WWJ) – Gibraltar Police say a man has confessed in the brutal murder of a Downriver woman, whose body parts were found stuffed in a suitcase.

Investigators tell WWJ Newsradio 950 the 52-year-old man has been taken into custody in connection with the case.

Pam Prpich (Family photo)

The dismembered remains of a 32-year-old woman, tentatively identified last week as Pam Prpich, were found in a suitcase floating in a creek along West Jefferson near Gibraltar Road last week.

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Prpich’s family lived in the nearby Bella Vista Condo complex and had been looking for her for several days before her body was found.

Russell Prince, who also lives in the complex, said the suspect had cancer and many other problems.

“He’s my age … went to school with my sister in Trenton. You know, he was on a lot of pills, but he drank,” said Prince. “If he drank too much he could be belligerent … but he wasn’t the kind of guy you couldn’t calm down. I just have a hard time gripping that he actually did that.”

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It is unclear what connection the man may have had with the victim. Prince said he didn’t believe the suspect had a girlfriend.

“He’s dying. He has cancer. He wasn’t really into the thought, you know. I’m in the same boat. I’m not gonna have a girlfriend. Why would I want to have a relationship when I know all I’m going to do is hurt her in a short time? And that’s where I thought his head was at,” said Prince.

Gibraltar Police Chief Ray Canterbury said the man confessed to being involved after more remains from the body were found in his home.

At this point, police think the suspect acted alone.

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His name has not yet been released. An arraignment was scheduled for Friday.