Danielle Rae Brooks was a good kid with a big heart, but she could not overcome her 10-year battle with schizophrenia, her father said Monday.
Brooks was found dead Saturday in Bryn Mawr Meadows Park when a man walking through a wooded area of the park just west of downtown Minneapolis came upon her body.
Brooks, nicknamed "Danny," had been in and out of treatment centers over the past decade. She was "deeply loved" in every one of them, said her father, Thomas Bottolfsen. But she would not stay.
"She was determined to be on the streets," he said. "She was not going to go back to treatment. This is a rough one."
Brooks was discovered around 3:30 p.m. on the eastern edge of the park, which is located on the north side of Interstate 394 near Penn Avenue N. She was found near a pedestrian bridge that serves the Luce Line Trail and connects the park, police said.
It was not immediately clear how Brooks died or how long she had been in the park before she was found. She was wearing several layers of clothing at time she was found, Bottolfsen said.
"If she froze to death, it might have been the night before," he said.
Bottolfsen said he learned the victim was his daughter after police used fingerprints to identify her and contacted Brooks' mother.
An autopsy is being conducted by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office.
Anybody with information is asked to call investigators at 612-692-8477.