Kentucky State Police Central Forensic Laboratory Teams with Othram to Identify Owen County 1988 Jane Doe

After 33 years, Linda Bennett has been identified as the 1988 homicide victim previously known as Owen County Jane Doe

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Published December 19 by Michael Vogen
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In May 1988, a couple from Owenton, KY spotted an unresponsive woman on their way to get the newspaper. The unknown woman was found partially nude with the exception of a pair of dark brown men’s dress socks. Investigators estimated that the woman was 25 to 40 years old , likely Cacausian, and with dark brown hair. At the time of her death she was about 5’5” tall and she weighed 120 lbs. She was missing portions of her left hand and she had a stick-and-poke tattoo of the name “Steve” on her upper right arm. Along with the men's socks she was wearing, investigators recovered a brown nylon blouse, a pair of white men's Winner's Choice tennis shoes size 5 1/2, a pair of jeans, and a blue bra in proximity to the site of discovery. Though the woman had been deceased for a few days and likely exposed to the elements, investigators were able to determine that the death was a homicide and that the cause of death as strangulation. It is speculated that the woman may have had connections to Columbus, OH and/or southern Florida.

Investigators collected and compared her fingerprints to others in government databases. Multiple forensic facial reconstructions were developed to help aid in the identification of the woman. The case was entered into the National Missing and Unidentified Persons (NamUs) Database as UP101. The combined efforts of this investigation were not able to produce leads that would identify this woman.

In 2022, the Kentucky State Police teamed with Othram to use advanced DNA testing to help establish an identity for the unknown woman or to at least identify a nearest living relative. Skeletal evidence was sent to Othram's lab in The Woodlands, Texas, where Othram's forensic scientists developed a DNA extract and used Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing® to build a comprehensive DNA profile for the female homicide victim. A DNASolves fund was created to fund the costs associated with this case. We are so very grateful to the community for helping us crowdfund the necessary costs to identify this woman.

Othram's in-house genealogy team used forensic genetic genealogy to produce investigative leads that were returned to law enforcement investigators. A follow up investigation using these leads determined that the homicide victim was 38-year-old Linda Bennett. She was reported missing to authorities in Columbus, Ohio in June 1988, not long after her body was found. Anyone with any information regarding this case is encouraged to call Det Johnson of KSP - Post 5 at 502-532-6363 and reference agency case number 05-88-0277 or NamUs ID UP101.

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Michael Vogen

Michael Vogen

Director of Case Management

2829 Technology Forest Blvd Suite 100, The Woodlands, Texas 77381

Michael works with law enforcement agencies throughout the United States and Canada on “unsolvable“ cases that can benefit from advanced DNA testing methods. He helps these agencies use cutting edge DNA sequencing and new forensic techniques to develop investigative leads for their cases.

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About Othram Inc.

Othram is the world’s first private DNA laboratory built specifically to apply the power of modern parallel sequencing to forensic evidence. Othram’s scientists are experts at ... Read morerecovery, enrichment, and analysis of human DNA from trace quantities of degraded or contaminated materials. Founded in 2018, and located in The Woodlands, Texas, our team works with academic researchers, forensic scientists, medical examiners, and law enforcement agencies to achieve results when other approaches have failed. Follow Othram on Twitter @OthramTech or visit to learn how we can help you with your case. With anyone can make a difference and help solve the next cold case.