Office of Public Affairs & Media Relations
DNA MATCH CONFIRMS HUMAN REMAINS FOUND IN 2016 ARE MANDY CIEHANOSKI’S
A DNA match has confirmed that human remains found in Flagler County in 2016 are those of Mandy Ciehanoski, the victim of a 2011 homicide. Her killer, Michael Annicchiarico, is serving a life prison sentence for second-degree murder.
The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office along with the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and St. Johns County Medical Examiner’s Office were notified of the match Thursday by the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification (UNTCHI). Ciehanoski’s family was notified shortly after that.
Ciehanoski was reported missing Feb. 14, 2011, a week after she was last seen by her family. Sheriff’s detectives determined Annicchiarico was with her on the day she disappeared, despite his statements that he hadn’t seen her in two years. Detectives found blood evidence in Annicchiarico’s closet, trash and vehicle. (Additional background on the case is provided in previous news releases below.)
In October 2011, Annicchiarico was indicted for Ciehanoski’s murder. In 2014, he pleaded no contest to second-degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison. Annicchiarico stated that he left Ciehanoski’s body in a wooded area near Ormond Beach. At the time, an extensive search for her remains was unsuccessful.
In November 2016, a drone operator found human remains in a wooded area in Flagler County, just north of Ormond Beach, following a drone crash.
The remains were recovered by the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and submitted to the University of Florida C.A. Pound Human Identification Laboratory by the St. John’s County Medical Examiner for forensic analysis. The VCSO Major Case Unit contacted FCSO about the Ciehanoski case, and the remains were submitted to UNTCHI for DNA comparison to familial DNA samples collected during the VCSO investigation. Two years later, the results officially returned a match.
Each of the agencies mentioned above, along with the State Attorney’s Office Homicide Investigative unit, never gave up on finding Mandy Ciehanoski, bringing her back to those who loved her and hopefully providing a sense of closure to her family.
October 17, 2011
EX-BOYFRIEND INDICTED IN MURDER OF MISSING WOMAN
Within days of a 31-year-old Holly Hill woman going missing in February, Michael Annicchiarico was lying about everything from when he had last seen his ex-girlfriend and what she had been driving at the time to why his hands were so swollen. Considered a person of interest early on in Mandy Ciehanoski’s disappearance, Volusia County Sheriff’s investigators have been methodically building a case against Annicchiarico for the last eight months. Based on the findings of the investigation, the Volusia County Grand Jury on Monday returned an indictment against Annicchiarico for 1st-degree murder. The case, brought before the Grand Jury by the State Attorney’s Office, additionally charges Annicchiarico with tampering with evidence. While Sheriff’s investigators are all but certain that Ciehanoski is dead, her body hasn’t been found. But all the signs point to Annicchiarico being her killer.
Family members reported Ciehanoski as missing to the Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 14, although Feb. 7 was the last time anyone had seen her. During the initial investigation, Annicchiarico told investigators that he hadn’t seen the victim for about two years. That turned out to be a lie. Investigators turned up evidence that the two were together on Feb. 7, the day Ciehanoski disappeared. And when Annicchiarico reported to work two days later, his boss noted that his hands were swollen. He claimed the injury occurred during a fracas in which he had been thrown out of a strip club. But when questioned by Sheriff’s investigators, Annicchiarico insisted he hadn’t been to a strip club in years. He also lied about an incident where he texted pictures of himself and Ciehanoski having sex. The two had an on-again, off-again relationship, and Ciehanoski’s family considered Annicchiarico to be violent and controlling. Ciehanoski had confided in family members that one time, Annicchiarico had awakened her and dragged her outside to show her a hole in the ground. He told Ciehanoski that’s where she would end up if he ever caught her cheating. While locked up in jail, Annicchiarico wrote numerous letters to Ciehanoski. Sheriff’s investigators were told that one of them appeared to have been written in blood.
Annicchiarico has been behind bars at the Volusia County Branch Jail in Daytona Beach since Feb. 24, facing a variety of charges that include making a false report to law enforcement, providing false information to law enforcement during an investigation, grand theft, forgery and unlawful transfer of a title. Meanwhile, the investigation by the Sheriff’s Office’s Major Case Unit into the disappearance turned up more evidence pointing to Annicchiarico. That included blood-stained bed sheets stuffed into a trash bag found in Annicchiarico’s closet, a pair of discarded latex gloves -- one of which had blood on the inside -- found in the trash outside of Annicchiarico’s home and blood in the trunk of the car that Annicchiarico was using at the time of Ciehanoski’s disappearance. The blood in the glove matched Annicchiarico’s, while a DNA analysis of the blood in the car and on the linens showed that there was an almost mathematical certainty that it came from someone related to Ciehanoski’s parents. Sheriff’s investigators tried to question Annicchiarico about the blood, but he got nervous and said he thought he needed a lawyer.
Witness interviews also point the finger at Annicchiarico. One close friend of Annicchiarico told investigators that he had been threatening to kill Ciehanoski for years and even talked about where would be a good place to dump the body. Investigators along with cadaver dogs have searched more than a dozen locations, but haven’t been able to find the body. Another friend said that Annicchiarico had admitted to killing Ciehanoski and even gave him some of her jewelry to dispose of. But first, the friend had to soak the jewelry in peroxide to wash the blood off of it. A jail inmate also has come forward to tell investigators that while incarcerated, Annicchiarico divulged to him that he had killed Ciehanoski.
February 25, 2011
PERSON OF INTEREST ARRESTED IN SEARCH FOR MISSING WOMAN
Missing for nearly three weeks without a trace, the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office is now calling the search for a 31-year-old Holly Hill woman a homicide investigation. Thursday night, the Sheriff’s Office arrested an Ormond Beach man considered a person of interest in the disappearance of Mandy Ciehanoski. While the search for Ciehanoski continues, the Sheriff’s Office has charged Michael Annicchiarico with impeding the investigation by lying about being with the woman.
Family members reported Ciehanoski as missing to the Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 14. By that time, she had already been gone for a week. Sheriff’s investigators have been interviewing family and friends in an effort to find out what happened to Ciehanoski. Among those interviewed was Annicchiarico, who used to date the missing woman. He initially told investigators that he hadn’t seen the victim for about two years. He later changed his story, admitting that he had seen Ciehanoski as recently as December. Investigators, however, learned that also was a lie after they obtained surveillance video that showed the two together just five days before Ciehanoski’s disappearance. Confronted with the evidence from the surveillance video, Annicchiarico has now admitted to investigators that he last saw the victim on Feb. 7, which was the last time anyone has seen or heard from her. Investigators said Annicchiarico also lied about what vehicle the victim was driving on the day of her disappearance. Based on information uncovered during the investigation, Sheriff’s officials now believe that Ciehanoski was the victim of foul play and is most likely dead. The investigation has now been turned over to the Sheriff’s Office’s Major Case Unit.
After bringing Annicchiarico in for another interview Thursday night, the Sheriff’s Office arrested him on charges of making a false report to law enforcement and providing false information to law enforcement during an investigation. Investigators also charged him with forgery and unlawful transfer of a title for illegally transferring ownership of a car that didn’t belong to him. Additionally, Holly Hill Police have charged Annicchiarico with grand theft.
Annicchiarico, 33, of Ormond Beach, is being held at the Volusia County Branch Jail in Daytona Beach on $13,500 bond. Anyone with information about Annicchiarico or the whereabouts of Ciehanoski is asked to contact Sheriff’s investigator Beth Fortin at (386) 248-1777.
February 15, 2011
VOLUSIA DEPUTIES SEARCHING FOR MISSING HOLLY HILL WOMAN
The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the public’s help in locating a 31-year-old Holly Hill woman who hasn’t been seen in a week. Relatives contacted the Sheriff’s Office on Monday to report Mandy Ciehanoski missing. They said they didn’t immediately contact authorities because she had gone missing in the past. But after a week went by with no word, they became worried enough to call the Sheriff’s Office.
According to relatives, Ciehanoski left her home at 1119 Valencia Ave. on Feb. 7, saying she was going to help a friend with an errand. That was the last her family has seen of her. At one point, Ciehanoski was driving a friend’s pickup truck. However, the truck was found abandoned in a park in Ormond Beach on Feb. 8.
Ciehanoski, who reportedly has struggled in the past with drug and alcohol problems, is 5’4” and weighs approximately 110 pounds. She has hazel eyes and shoulder length brown hair. Anyone with information regarding Ciehanoski’s whereabouts is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at (386) 248-1770.
Administrative offices: West Volusia 386-736-5961 Daytona Beach 386-254-4689 New Smyrna Beach 386-423-3352
Non-emergency dispatch numbers: DeLand 386-943-8276 Daytona Beach 386-239-8276 New Smyrna Beach 386-409-8276 Osteen 407-323-0151