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BREAKING NEWS

Jane Doe search continues

By Staff | Jan 17, 2009

Jane Doe search continues

Is a Michigan woman reported missing in 1979 the ‘Jane Doe’ buried in a Blue Earth cemetery?

According to a story recently published in the Flint Journal, the family of Paulette Jaster wants investigators to look at the two cases again.

More than two years ago, Michigan state police used dental records to determine Jaster was not ‘Jane Doe.’

Sheriff Mike Gormley says local authorities have ruled out the possibility that Jaster is the unidentified woman found on May, 30, 1980.

However, the sheriff says his office is willing to take another look at a possible Jaster-Blue Earth connection.

“Evidently the family wants it looked at again. If authorities give us DNA and dental records we’ll do something,” Gormley says.

Jaster, a star basketball player and homecoming queen candidate from Davison High School, was reported missing nearly 30 years ago.

That was around the same time a farmer found a woman’s decomposing body in a ditch along I-90 east of Blue Earth. Her identity and where she came from remain a mystery.

Faribault County chief deputy Scott Adams has been handling the on-going investigation.

Adams says four previous investigators have determined Jaster is not ‘Jane Doe.’

“I have to trust our investigators and take their word why Jaster was ruled out,” he says. “If this was a new hot lead we’d be all over it.”

The Flint Journal reported that one of Jaster’s surviving sisters, Peggy Sperlich, would like authorities to compare DNA collected from her mother and father before their deaths.

Jeff Bauermeister, detective sergeant of Flint Township, says an investigator is working on the case.

He says the investigator is part of a task force working on ‘cold case’ homicides that have occurred in Flint.

“He’s in the process of developing a DNA profile and will send it to whoever has DNA to compare it to,” says Bauermeister.

Like Gormley, Adams welcomes any new evidence, such as DNA or dental records — that might help solve the two cases.

“I’m waiting for anything from them that might help us solve this case,” says Adams.

According to news reports, Jaster was a one-time honor student who developed schizophrenia, left college and roamed the country.

Family members last saw her walking toward I-69 in Davison with a green duffel bag on her shoulder on May 12, 1979.