New image could help solve 1995 Lee County cold case

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Image of 1995 cold case victim. Photo via SWFL Crime Stoppers

Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers is asking for your help to identify a woman whose body was recovered near St. James City almost 24 years ago.

SWFL Crime Stoppers says the unknown woman was found on October 7, 1995, in the area of York Island, which is just south of St. James City, off the southern end of Pine Island. At the time she was found, there were no clues as to who the woman was, or how she ended up in the waterway.

A search of missing persons reports also offered no matches as to who the woman could possibly be. The only clue detectives had at the time was a red medical smock that she was wearing, which had the words “Charleston S.C. V.A. Hospital.”  Unfortunately, there were no matches with any Charleston area hospital, nor any V.A. medical facilities. To this date, the woman is still considered a “Jane Doe”.

Following anthropological examination of the woman’s body, paired with technological advances, detectives have released a forensic artist’s rendering of what they believe the woman looked like just before she was found deceased.

Crime Stoppers is hoping that this picture will look familiar to someone who may be able to assist with finally identifying this woman and ultimately making a connection with her family. She is believed to be a white female in her late 30’s or early 40s, approximately 5’2” tall.

She was likely a smoker who suffered numerous fractures and surgeries over her lifetime, including surgically placed screws in her right ankle.  She also had evidence of cranial surgery on the left side of her skull.

Anyone with even the slightest bit of information on who this woman may be is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS (8477). All callers will remain anonymous and will be eligible for a cash reward of up to $3,000. Tips may also be made online at or by submitting a tip on the P3Tips mobile app.

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