On November 13, 2000, the torso of an unidentified female was found in the back parking lot of the Soldiers’ Home on Crest Avenue in Chelsea, Suffolk County, Massachusetts. The dismembered remains had been wrapped in a carpet.
A couple of years later, in January 2004, her head, feet and hands were found buried in a plastic container at a beach in the North Shore town of Nahant, Essex County, Massachusetts.
The remains were brought to the Massachusetts Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for examination, where it was determined Jane Doe had likely died 24 hours prior to being found.
Despite the state of the remains, it was determined her death was the result of strangulation.
The deceased is described as a medium-to-light-skinned Black female with possible East Indian, Cape Verdean or Asian admixture. She was likely between the ages of 17 and 25. She was petite with good muscle tone, standing around 5’0″ to 5’5″ and weighing between 100 and 130 pounds. She was wearing a wig when found, and her natural hair is described as short and brown-to-black in colour with a reddish tint. Due to the state of her remains, her eye colour is unknown. Her toenails were painted with purple nail polish.
She had a slight overbite, which might have been noticeable to others, and several dental fillings, indicating she’d been to a dentist at one point in her life.
Surveillance footage showed a man named Eugene McCollom dumping Jane Doe’s body. He was arrested on August 30, 2001 and admitted to the murder and dismemberment of the deceased. He alleged she’d been a prostitute named “Lisa” whom he’d picked up in the Theater District of Boston, Massachusetts. He’d driven her to his room at the YMCA in Lynn, where they later argued over payment. He claimed she’d reached for a knife and in self-defence he strangled her, then dismembered the body.
In February 2005, McCollom pleaded guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 15 years. He is also a possible suspect in other murders in the area.
Child advocates suspect Jane Doe may have been a former foster child and child sex trafficking victim, which would explain why she was never reported missing.
CASE CONTACT INFORMATION:
Jane Doe’s dentals are available for comparison.
Those with information regarding the identity of Jane Doe are asked to contact the Massachusetts State Police at either 505-820-2121 or 978-745-8908. Information can also be called in to the Suffolk County State Police Detective Unit at 617-727-8817 or the Massachusetts Office of the Medical Examiner at 617-267-6767.
Image Credit: NCMEC/Melissa Clark Maglio