Missing Birmingham Woman Found In a Shallow Grave

A search is underway for a Trussville woman who disappeared after leaving a bar in Birmingham’s Lakeview District.

Paighton Laine Houston, 29, was last seen Friday, December 20, 2019, at Tin Roof on the 2700 block of Seventh Avenue South. According to Birmingham police, she left the bar about 10:45 p.m. with two heavy-set black males. It seemed as if she left willingly with the two men.

Friends on Facebook said that she didn’t know the men and that the last text message from her to a friend stated she didn’t know where she was and she felt she might be in trouble. Family said she has not used her bank account since she disappeared and said her phone is going straight to voicemail.

Houston was wearing ripped blue jeans, a coral colored tee-shirt and blue Converse shoes. She is described as a white female, 5-feet, 2-inches tall and weighs 123 pounds.

Houston has tattoos on both of her arms. On her left arm, she has the word “strength” with the “g” replaced with a semi-colon (stren;th) and an arrow underneath it. On her right arm, near the wrist, Houston has a tattoo with the word “faith,” a friend says.

Anyone with information on Houston’s whereabouts is asked to call Birmingham police at 205–297-8413 or 911. If you have additional information on this investigation, contact Crime Stoppers at 205-254-7777.

On 1/2/2020 Detectives with the Trussville Police Department along with investigators with the Metro Area Crime Center developed information on a possible location for the remains of Paighton Houston. That information was shared with the Birmingham Police Department and Investigators arrived on scene and discovered what appeared to be a shallow grave. Law enforcement secured the area and a search was conducted on 1/03/2020 in which human remains were located behind a residence on Chapel Dr. Those remains have now been identified as Paighton Houston. 

The Jefferson County Sheriffs Office is working the death investigation and our agency will continue to assist the JCSO. If you have any further information on the case, please contact law enforcement as soon as possible.

Update: 2/4/20

 Jefferson County Coroner Bill Yates has concluded the cause of death for Paighton Houston and ruled it to be an accidental overdose.

On January 30, Yates concluded the cause of death as a morphine and methamphetamine toxicity and ruled the death to be accidental. This represents an overdose and is classified as a drug-opioid death.

On February 4, Yates released there was no signs of physical trauma to Paighton Houston. A full sexual assault kit was done. It has been sent to law enforcement and will be sent to the state forensics lab.

Houston was reported missing on December 21 after her parents say they were called by one of her friends that was with Houston the night before at Tin Roof in the Lakeview area. The friend said Houston willingly left with two men and was not seen again.

Investigators say evidence shows Houston died on December 21 at a home in Brighton. Authorities found Houston’s body on January 3 in Hueytown. She was wrapped in cloth and buried in a shallow grave behind a home.

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