January 19, 2021:
The Pecos Police Department has announced they’ve uncovered the identity of the unidentified female who accidentally drowned in the swimming pool of the Ropers Motel back on July 5, 1966.
Known as the “Pecos Jane Doe“, she has officially been identified as Jolaine Marie Hemmy of Kansas City, Kansas. The identification came as a result of a collaborative effort between the police department, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and Othram Inc. The latter is the world’s first private DNA laboratory built to apply modern parallel sequencing with forensic evidence.
The laboratory first reached out to the Pecos Police Department in early 2020 and received skeletal remains from the deceased in August of that year. From there, they were able to extract DNA and create a profile, from which they were able to conduct genealogical research. When a potential match was located, investigators provided DNA from a close relative of Jolaine’s, which verified Jane Doe’s identity.
Jolaine was just 17 years old when she vanished. Her family became alarmed when she did not pick up her paycheque from the drive-in diner she worked at in Kansas City. Despite extensive search efforts by them and local law enforcement, they were unable to find her. However, one family member did recall that an unidentified man had taken an interest in Jolaine at the time of her disappearance. Details regarding his identity are unknown at this time, and the investigation into Jolaine’s disappearance continues.
Those with information regarding Jolaine Hemmy’s disappearance and/or the man she was last seen with are asked to contact Corporal Felix Salcido of the Pecos Police Department at 432-445-4911.
Stories of the Unsolved will update this post as more details emerge.
Image Credit: DNASolves Crime