Mother and her son were killed before the 'family friend' kidnapped 16-year-old Hannah Anderson
The autopsy of a San Diego woman whose teenage daughter was abducted by a family friend shows that she was killed by at least a dozen blows to her head and that her young son's body was burned beyond recognition, according to an autopsy report.
Christina Anderson, 44, was found with duct tape wrapped around her neck and mouth several times and her ankles tied with a plastic cable, according to the report, which was released Monday by the San Diego County Medical Examiner Office. Cuts on her neck were likely inflicted after she died.
The bodies of Anderson and her 8-year-old son Ethan were found in a burning house belonging to a family friend, James DiMaggio, who is suspected of the killing pair and abduction 16-year-old Hannah Anderson.
The report does not say what kind of instrument was used to inflict the blows to the back of Anderson's head, forehead and nose, but authorities have said that firefighters found a crowbar near her body.
The examiner's office was unable to determine the cause of Ethan's death. The autopsy said he most likely died due to the fire, but that he also had skeletal fractures, and trauma could not be ruled out as a possible cause of the fractures.
DiMaggio, 40, was shot and killed by FBI Aug. 20 in the Idaho wilderness where he had taken Hannah Anderson in the bizarre kidnapping.
DiMaggio tied up and killed the two victims then set fire to the house in Boulevard, Calif., about 65 miles east of San Diego, before abducting Hannah. As authorities issued an AMBER alert for the teenager, he headed north by car, ending up in a remote section of Idaho.
Campers on horseback initially came across the pair at a remote campsite, but did not know about the manhunt until they got back home.
FBI agents, alerted by the campers, were airlifted into the backcountry to DiMaggio's campsite, where they shot and killed him.
San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore has called Hannah "a victim in every sense of the word." He has declined to discuss a possible motive and investigators haven't publicly addressed other aspects of the case, including why the family went to DiMaggio's home, and how Hannah was treated in captivity.
DiMaggio, known by the family as "Uncle Jim," had been asked by Christina Anderson to take Hannah to cheerleading camp Aug. 3 because she was at Ethan's football practice and unable to take her, San Diego County Sheriff's Detective Troy DuGal said in the autopsy report.
In another bizarre twist, Andrew Spanswick, who was a friend of DiMaggio's, told The Associated Press that DiMaggio's $112,000 life insurance policy was left to Bernice Anderson, mother of Brett Anderson and grandmother of Hannah and Ethan, to provide for them.
Sheriff's homicide Lt. Glenn Giannantonio said Monday that sheriff's officials had no comment on the autopsy reports and would not be releasing further information about their investigation, U-T San Diego reports.
Hannah, according to authorities, did not know until after her rescue that her mother and brother were dead. She said in online postings shortly after her release that DiMaggio, known to the family as "Uncle Jim," had rigged the garage to catch fire after she and he had left the area.
"I wish I could go back in time and risk my life to try and save theirs. I will never forgive myself for not trying harder to save them," she writes.
Hannah said the horror began after DiMaggio "tricked" the family into coming to his home.
"He told us he was losing his house because of money issues so we went up there one last time to support him, and to have fun riding go-karts up there but he tricked us," Anderson writes.
Asked by one person online whether DiMaggio had done anything sexual to her, she replies, "Can't answer that" at another point, to a similar question, she writes, 'I'm not supposed to talk about that."
Contributing: Associated Press