Cold Case: Investigators still trying to identify "Jane Doe" - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Cold Case: Investigators still trying to identify "Jane Doe"


Who is she, and how did her body end up on the side of the road? Those are two questions Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's investigators have been trying to answer for more than 22 years.

"When you have no idea who the person is... That alone by itself presents challenges that you have to overcome," said Sheriff Tony Mancuso.

What they do know is that she was shot to death. A passerby found the woman's body off Gray Road in Vinton just three days before Christmas 1991.

Based on the skeletal remains the Coroner believes the victim's body had been there for two to three weeks before being discovered. With little to go and no ID on their victim, the investigation was off to a very slow start.

Working with the LSU FACES Lab, they've come up with facial reconstructions of what their "Jane Doe" could look like. DNA also tells them she was likely Native American. That is supported by the pieces of jewelry found on her body: an earring with two hearts and ring that resembles a bird. According to investigators, both pieces have Southwestern origin.

"The jewelry is an important key. Somebody gave that to her... A boyfriend, a mom... A relative. Somebody gave that to her," said Mancuso.

Over the years, Mancuso said tips have come in, but never panned out. For now the evidence and the jewelry remain sealed in a file - as the mystery of what happened to "Jane Doe" off Gray Road remains unsolved.

"The only way this case is going to be solved is if somebody comes forward and helps us... identify this person first of all and at least lead us in the right direction," said Mancuso.

The victim is believed to be 22 to 29 years old, 5'2 to 5'6 inches tall. All of the information has been entered into a special FBI database for victims of violent crimes. 

Anyone who has information that could help the case is urged to call the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's office at 491-3700.

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