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. To date, leads have been exhausted and no one has come forward with information that has been able to assist investigators in determining who this woman was.
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. 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. A DNASolves fund has been created to cover the cost of casework services.
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 recovery, 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 Othram.com to learn how we can help you with your case. With dnasolves.com anyone can make a difference and help solve the next cold case.