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Pregnant Jane Doe 1975: Found Murdered In Iowa

Pregnant Jane Doe 1975: Found Murdered In Iowa

Unidentified Woman Iowa, Jane Doe 1975

There wasn’t anything peculiar happening in Clinton, Iowa, on April 11, 1975. A fisherman and his 16-year-old son from nearby Sabula, an island that boasts less than 1,000 residents, certainly didn’t expect a gruesome scene while traveling along the Mississippi River.

It was there that the fisherman stumbled upon the remains of a Black woman or girl who, according to authorities, could have been as young as 12 years old. Jane Doe suffered a gunshot wound to the head, reportedly located behind her right ear. By the time she was found, her body was so severely decomposed that pinpointing the time of death or any specifics about her descriptors proved to be complicated. A medical examiner later determined that the young woman was approximately ten weeks pregnant, and she was killed sometime earlier in the year.

According to databases, the unidentified woman could have been any age between 12 and 23, and she was 5 feet 2 inches to 5 feet 4 inches tall. It’s estimated that she was somewhere between 100 to 120 pounds at the time of her death. Authorities logged her fingerprints and dental records, but she has yet to be identified. There were plenty of leads at the onset of the investigation that took detectives from Iowa to Illinois to North Carolina, but nothing seemed to pan out in the end. Jane Doe is the oldest unidentified person in Clinton’s database.

In 2001, Clinton County Sheriff Rick Lincoln told the Quad-City Times that Jane Done’s death continues to plague investigators.

“Some of the older deputies who were around then said maybe somebody out of Chicago or Milwaukee had a pregnant girlfriend and got rid of her. We might never know,” Lincoln told the publication.

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The unidentified woman was later laid to rest in an unmarked grave at a cemetery in Clinton, Iowa. There isn’t a case number listed in the NamUs government database nor composite sketches of what she may have looked like.

Please share this story about this Jane Doe to ignite interest in her case. She is our sister, and her life matters.


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