TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Excavation work is underway at a construction site in Largo as authorities investigate a tip about the cold case disappearances of at least two women who went missing decades ago.

Retha Hiers is seen in a photo taken in 1982. (Source: Dana Hiers)

The Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office’s forensic units are at a site located in the 1200 block of Gooden Crossing.

The sheriff’s office confirmed it was “conducting an excavation” while investigating a tip about three cold cases. The cases involve Retha Hiers, who disappeared in 1982 and Donyelle Johnson, who disappeared in 1989.

Dana Hiers, who was 14 years old when her mother disappeared, said that she hopes the investigation will finally bring the families some answers.

“We need closure. There’s three families that need closure,” said Hiers.

The sheriff’s office said it was also investigating whether the site was linked to the disappearance of Margaret Dash, who went missing in 1974. However, Clearwater police, who have been investigating her disappearance, said it does not appear her case is connected to the dig.

The Pinellas County Sheriff’s office identified a suspect in the missing person cases, but said that the man has died. Because he was never charged in connection with cases, News Channel 8 is not naming him.

The sheriff’s office said its detectives and forensic experts were expected to be at the site throughout the day Wednesday and Thursday.

Further information about the investigation was not immediately available.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates and download the free News Channel 8 app to receive breaking news alerts.