Toronto Police Service Teams with Othram to Identify a 2017 Toronto Jane Doe

After 7 years, a female found near Lake Ontario near Humber Bay Shores in Toronto, Ontario, has been identified.

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Published May 22, 2024 by Michael Vogen
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In August 2017, the remains of an unidentified individual were discovered in Lake Ontario near Humber Bay Shores in Toronto, Ontario. Investigators were called to the scene and determined the remains were that of a female between 48 and 72 years old. The individual had short white hair, brown eyes, and bilateral mammoplasty scars at the time of discovery. The female remains were transported to the Toronto Police Service for examination where it was determined that there were no signs of foul play and her manner of death was ruled as undetermined.

Several items were found in the vicinity of the woman's remains, but none of them provided clues to her identity. Despite continuous efforts by law enforcement to identify the woman, no leads yielded a match and the case went cold.

In 2022, the Toronto Police Service submitted forensic evidence to Othram in The Woodlands, Texas in hopes that advanced DNA testing could help to identify the individual. Othram scientists used Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing® to build a comprehensive DNA profile for the unknown woman. Once the profile was developed, it was returned to the Toronto Police Service for use in a forensic genetic genealogy search to develop new leads in the case.

Using this new information, a follow-up investigation was conducted leading investigators to potential relatives of the woman throughout North America, most of whom traced their heritage to a specific region in Switzerland. In August 2023, members of the Toronto Police Service, with the assistance of the RCMP Liaison Program, reached out to police in Switzerland. Through continued collaboration, the investigation focused on a woman who was reported missing in Switzerland in September 2017. As the woman's death is not considered a criminal matter, the woman's identity is not being released.

The identification of Toronto Jane Doe (2017) represents the seventh case in Ontario where investigators have publicly identified an individual using technology developed by Othram. Most recently in Toronto, William Taylor was confirmed to have been at the crime scene of the murder of Kevin McBride in 1982.

Help fund another case Your contributions pay for lab supplies and research tools

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.