Support for LAist comes from
Made of L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Who Was the Woman Whose Corpse Rode in Friend's Front Seat for Nearly a Year?

Our June member drive is live: protect this resource!
Right now, we need your help during our short June member drive to keep the local news you read here every day going. This has been a challenging year, but with your help, we can get one step closer to closing our budget gap. Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership.

Signe Margit (via Costa Mesa PD)

Signe Margit (via Costa Mesa PD)
In December 2009, Signe Margit met a woman at Mile Square Regional Park in Fountain Valley. Margit, a homeless woman who spent time at the park, was given permission by the woman, a Costa Mesa real estate agent, to sleep in the woman's car--a sedan that belonged to her father, explains the LA Times. Around that time, Margit's family reported the 59-year-old missing.However some time later, Margit passed away, but the woman chose not to report the death. Rather, she drove around with the decomposing, and ultimately mummified, corpse in her passenger seat for ten months.

Following the police's discovery of Margit's body, investigators have worked to piece together not only the bizarre circumstances of the case, but also Margit's past.

"Family members told detectives that Margit held two master's degrees," notes the Times. "In 2001, she was issued a pre-intern teaching certificate for cross-cultural, language and academic development emphasis in California, according to records."

Support for LAist comes from

In the ensuing years, Margit's addresses and jobs were scattered around California, Washington, and Texas, and it appears she encountered serious money problems before returning to the L.A. area. "Costa Mesa police Sgt. Ed Everett said she was working in a job he declined to identify in Los Angeles County for three years until she was let go in August 2009."

Authorities believe Margit's death was not "the result of foul play," though further report results are pending. They credit the public in coming forward with info about the troubled woman with the unusual first name to help them uncover the identity of Margit.

Most Read