April 14, 2021:
More details have been released regarding the last time Evelyn Colon had contact with her family. Evelyn, a Puerto Rican native, had been living with Luis Sierra in an apartment in Jersey City in 1976. At the time, she was approximately eight to nine months pregnant. In the middle of December of that year, she wasn’t feeling well and had asked her mother to bring her some soup. However, when a relative went to deliver it to her, they found the apartment was empty.
Evelyn was never reported missing by her family because they thought she’d intentionally cut off ties with them. This was due to a letter they’d received in January 1977. Purportedly written by Evelyn, the Spanish language note said that she and Sierra had moved to Connecticut, where she’d given birth. The letter stated that Evelyn would contact her family if she ever needed anything.
Evelyn’s niece, Miriam Colon-Veltman, has created a GoFundMe campaign to help cover the costs of a memorial and headstone for the deceased teenager. The target is $15,000. On the page, she states that the family has decided to call her deceased daughter Emily Grace Colon.
Sierra has since been extradited to Carbon County on one charge of homicide. He was sent to county prison without bail. The county’s District Attorney will meet with the Pennsylvania State Police to discuss the possibility of additional charges, with prosecutors still deciding on whether or not to pursue the death penalty in the case.
March 31, 2021:
The Pennsylvania State Police have uncovered the identity of the unidentified female found deceased beneath the I-80 Bridge in Carbon County, Pennsylvania on December 20, 1976.
Known as “Beth Doe“, she has officially been identified as 15-year-old Evelyn Colon of Jersey City, New Jersey. The identification comes after over 44 years of investigative measures and sees a 63-year-old man by the name of Luis Sierra being arrested for the young girl’s murder. Sierra, who currently resides in Ozone Park in Queens, New York has been arrested on one count of criminal homicide and is currently awaiting extradition to Carbon County. He was 19 years old at the time the crime was committed.
Evelyn was just 15 years old when a teenage boy found her remains and that of her unborn child in three suitcases along the riverbank that runs under the I-80 bridge. An examination of the remains showed the suitcases had been thrown from the bridge and that her remains had been dismembered with a serrated tool. In 2017, over 30 years after her murder, it was announced that isotope testing was being conducted to develop a better picture of where the deceased had lived during her short life.
Both the Pennsylvania State Police and the Carbon County District Attorney’s Office have declined to offer additional information at this time, but have stated they will provide more details in the near future.
Stories of the Unsolved will update this post as more details emerge.
Image Credit: NCMEC/The Doe Network