Boone County detectives exhume woman’s body in 1992 murder case for DNA tests

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BOONE COUNTY, Ind. (July 31, 2015) -- A murder mystery that has stumped Boone County investigators for more than 20 years may finally get traction toward being solved. The body of a woman who was killed back in 1992 has now been exhumed. Investigators hope they'll be able to find out who she is and what happened to her.

DNA technology is far more advanced from where it was when a farmer made that gruesome discovery. Investigators are looking at that in hopes of getting them closer to identifying her.

Since she was found half naked and dead in a ditch along I-65 near State Road 47, she's been known as Jane Doe. There's no real solid evidence of how she died and nothing to say for sure who dumped her there.

"It's haunting to me, and I've been in law enforcement 31 years," said Boone County Sheriff Mike Nielsen.

As technologically advanced as we are these days, Sheriff Nielsen says he hopes that will make advancements toward finding out who she is. Detectives have an idea of what she looked like, by way of a clay mold made in 1993, one year after her body was found. They believe she was between 17 and 23 years old, but it's just not enough.

"And we're hoping by exhuming her body, yesterday, via court order, that we can narrow down how old she really was," Sheriff Nielsen said.

The job of exhuming Jane Doe was helped along by the pathology and forensic team at the University of Indianapolis. They now have Jane Doe's body and any potential DNA yet to be discovered.

"DNA is much, much easier to do now, it's faster, it's better," Sheriff Nielsen added.

He says this case is not considered cold. In fact, Sheriff Nielsen says it's very much an active case with two investigators on the case that he appointed.