Unsolved Mystery - Snohomish County's Jane Doe

On April 1, 2008, officials exhumed Jane Doe to retrieve DNA samples in an effort to once again identify her.

March 21, 2009

WA NEWS -- The Snohomish County Sheriff's Office in Washington state has presented the public with an unusual Jane Doe case, in an effort to identify a young woman whose homicide has been solved for nearly 30 years. Furthermore, Snohomish County Sheriff's detectives would like to permanently close this case by returning Jane Doe's remains to her home and family.

During August in the summer of 1977, the badly decomposed body of an unidentified female was discovered by blackberry pickers in the south Everett, Washington area off 112th St. SW and 4th Ave. W., known then as Emander Road. The victim, labeled Jane Doe, had been strangled and shot several times in the head. Due to the extreme decomposition of Jane Doe's body, Officials were unable to even identify her age.

Fortunately, Jane Doe received justice, in 1979, David Roth was convicted of Jane Doe's murder and was sentenced to prison, served his time and was released. Mr. Roth co-operated with cold case detectives, but was unable to help in the identification of Jane Doe since he did not even remember his victim's first name.

Roth had gone to swim at Silver Lake, and afterward picked up Jane Doe hitchhiking near the lake. From there, they went to an area near where her body was later found and drank some beer. When Roth made sexual advances toward Jane Doe, she refused. Rejected, Roth strangled and shot her to death.

On April 1, 2008, cold case detective's James Scharf, David Heitzman, and officials from the Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office, exhumed Jane Doe's remains to retrieve DNA samples in an effort to once again identify Jane Doe. King County Anthropologist, Dr. Kathy Taylor examined the bones and determined that Jane Doe was likely to have been 15 to 21years old at the time of her murder.

Jane Doe is described as a white female, probably between the ages of 15 and 21. The autopsy report estimates she was about 5 feet 10 inches tall and 155 pounds. She had short, light brown to brown hair, which did not have any hair color or treatment on it. She appeared to have a suntan and was wearing the following: a tank top with pastel stripes, cut off jeans, and blue and white tennis shoes. She also had a Timex watch with a brown leather band on her left wrist. Her upper two front teeth had dental restorations.

In 1992, now retired Sheriff's Detective John Hinds, attempted to use a plaster cast of Jane Doe's skull to create a facial reconstruction, which was released to the media in hopes of identifying her. Unfortunately, her identification remained a mystery. Furthermore, the facial reconstruction is no longer available. However, in hopes of providing a picture of her that reflects her between the ages of 15 and 21, Detective John Hinds (RET.) has completed a new sketch of Jane Doe's facial appearance based on photos of his original reconstruction. Snohomish County Sheriffs Office hopes a relative of Jane Doe will recognize her from the updated sketch, and provide a sample of their DNA to confirm Jane Doe's identity.

Anyone who recognizes the girl in the sketch or any of the other items in these photos is asked to call Snohomish County Sheriff's tip line at 425-388-3845. People should call the tip line at 425-388-3845, providing the following information:

  • The missing girl's first name
  • Middle initial
  • Last name
  • Date of birth

Snohomish County Sheriff's Office is also asking anyone who reported a girl missing in 1970 who fits the description of Jane Doe or even resembles Jane Doe to call. Snohomish County Sheriff's Office has offered to verify that the missing person is still registered in state and national databases for missing persons.

Finally, we would like to commend Sheriff John Lovick and the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office for taking this extra effort in making this unusual worldwide appeal to find Jane Doe's family, so her soul may rest in peace.

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