Lorena Gayle Mosley identified as the Jane Doe in 26-year-old murder case in Washoe County, Nevada

Lorena Gayle Mosley smiling in a profile pic
Lorena Gayle Mosley’s remains were found by hikers 26 years ago. Pic credit: Washoe County Medical Examiner’s Office

The Regional Medical Examiner’s Office in Washoe County, Nevada, has identified a corpse found over two decades ago as the remains of Lorena Gayle Mosley.

The 41-year-old’s remains were initially discovered on June 9, 1997, under a pile of rocks in a remote area by a group of hikers.

At the time, an autopsy was unable to determine her identity or the cause of death; however, the Sheriff’s Office concluded the circumstances indicated this was a homicide.

Yesterday, the authorities announced that after 26 years, they finally had a breakthrough.

The Washoe medical examiner submitted the dead woman’s DNA to a genetic genealogy database, which enabled them to identify Mosley’s family group.

The police and the FBI then compared old paper fingerprint records and compared them with prints taken from the corpse, which allowed them to confirm it was Mosley.

Washoe County officials pleased that missing Lorena Gayle Mosley is now identified

Chief Medical Examiner and Coroner Dr. Laura D. Knight hailed the breakthrough in a statement: “This is the first lead in over 20 years on this cold case, made possible through new technology and innovation, and the generosity of donors. I am deeply gratified to be able to give Ms. Mosley the dignity of being laid to rest with her name.”

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The police have informed Mosley’s next of kin, and the corpse will now be released to them for burial or cremation.

The authorities used the services of Othram, a Texas-based private lab specializing in forensic genetic genealogy.

The use of the genealogy services cost several thousands of dollars, and the cash was raised through a combination of funding from the Medical Examiner’s Office and public donations.

The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office is still investigating the case, and they ask anyone with any information to contact the Detectives’ Division at 775-328-3320.

Washoe County need more help identifying John Doe following Lorena Gayle Mosley case

The authorities in Washoe County have also requested help with another John Doe case. In November 1984, a group of hunters discovered the skeletal remains of a man at a campsite north of Tracy Clark Power Station.

The John Doe was estimated to be a 35 to 45-year-old white man approximately 5’4” tall. The police suspect his remains had been in the area since July 1983. The Examiner’s Office is requesting members of the public follow this link to give donations so they can, again, submit DNA to Othram.

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