Polk Co. Sheriff's Office
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Seeking Public's Help with a 1996 Cold Case Homicide (Photo) - 09/11/14
The Polk County Sheriff's Office and the Oregon State Medical Examiner's Office are requesting the public's help in identifying the skeletal remains of a female that was found in the hills overlooking the Mill Creek area of rural Polk County on September 1, 1996.

The Oregon State Medical Examiner's Office has determined that the bones are of a Caucasian female, middle age or older. The following are likely descriptors of the female:

Caucasian female, 45 years of age or older at the time of her disappearance, between 5'0 and 5'6" in height, with a slight build and possible curvature of the spine;

Most likely having a complete upper denture;

Black and gray hair;

The skull shows a crescent shaped surgical incision in the forehead area and has been determined to be a sinus related surgery that appeared to have occurred years before her death. This procedure may or may not have left a visible scar.

The decedent's body may have been in the Mill Creek area for as little as a few months up to one year making the time of disappearance from the fall of 1995 to the summer of 1996.

After extensive searching of missing person's reports from 1995 and 1996 in Polk County and throughout Oregon brought little in the way of leads to the decedent's identity, it is possible the decedent may have been from another state.

Due to the suspicious circumstances found at the scene, the Polk County Sheriff's Office investigated this incident as a homicide. Earlier this year, this case was turned over to the Polk County Sheriff's Office Cold Case Team who has worked with OHSU and the Oregon State Medical Examiner's Office to develop medical information regarding the surgical scar as well as receiving an updated profile sketch, which was completed by personnel from the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.

The updated sketch is included with this release of information. Additional details can be found on www.Namus.gov under the Unidentified Persons Database, Case #9457, where additional sketches, photos, and case information can be found.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office requests that anyone who may have information regarding this incident or any missing person that fits the above description and estimated time of disappearance, please contact the Polk County Sheriff's Office tip line at 503-623-1878 or contact Det. Sgt. Mark Garton or Det. John Williams at 503-623-9251.