‘Midtown Jane Doe’ finally identified after 50 years using DNA from 9/11 victim’s mother

Now the victim has been identified, detectives are continuing to try and find out who may have killed this 16-year-old girl over 50 years ago

Amelia Neath
Tuesday 30 April 2024 18:39 BST
‘Midtown Jane Doe’ finally identified after 50 years using DNA from relative killed in 9/11

A cold case murder left unsolved for over five decades has had a significant breakthrough after the victim was identified in an unusual twist after assessing the DNA of the mother of one of her relatives who had died on 9/11.

In February 2003, construction workers in Hell’s Kitchen, who were preparing to demolish a building, made a horrifying discovery when a skull rolled out of a concrete floor they were knocking through, cold case Detective Ryan Glas with the New York Police Department told NBC New York.

After this discovery, authorities recovered the skeleton of a 16-year-old girl wrapped in a carpet and encased in cement.

“She was hogtied with electrical cord, and the remains that were found were exactly how she was; she was in the fetal position," Mr Glas said.

The medical examiner at the time determined she had died from strangulation.

However, no one knew who the teenager could be, and she was known for 21 years as ‘Midtown Jane Doe’ – until the NYPD Cold Case Squad gave her back her real identity.

As DNA testing became more advanced, police were able to reopen the case that went cold and identified the teenager as Patricia Kathleen McGlone.

Through forensic investigative genealogy, a family tree was put together for Jane Doe, and genetic experts stated that the DNA of a specific maternal cousin could confirm her identity, as her parents were both dead and she had no siblings.

Detectives started interviewing people linked to the tree across the country when Mr Glas was finally able to find the key piece of DNA.

Patricia Kathleen McGlone’s remains were found wrapped in a blanket and seeped in cement (WNBC)

While the cousin had already died, her son told Mr Glas that his mother submitted a DNA swab after his sister died in the 9/11 terror attacks in New York City, something done by many relatives of victims to try and identify them after the attacks, CNN reported.

After retrieving and comparing this DNA, detectives were able to give McGlone her identity back.

Another hint at her identity was a ring that was recovered with her remains bearing her initials, PMcG, matching her name.

After ‘Midtown Jane Doe’ was now known as Patricia McGlone, Mr Glas told NBC that they started to unravel more details about the teenager, such as how she lived in Brooklyn.

“She was Catholic, and she lived in Sunset Park," he said. "She was baptised, she received communion and ultimately had confirmation. She went to public school, and she went to Catholic school. She went to Charles Dewey Middle School in Sunset Park.”

She was also described by Mr Glas to CNN as “a runaway and a truant” as her school attendance records began to dwindle in the years prior to her murder.

The teenager had gotten married and was no longer in touch with her family in the period leading to her death, the outlet said.

While her body was only discovered in 2003, it is believed that she was murdered in 1969, with her body hidden in a building that once launched the careers of many rock stars.

A ring found with the skeleton gave clues as to what the victim’s initials were (WNBC)

“Jimi Hendrix, a lot of other bands,” Mr Glas explained. “During the mid-to-late ‘60s, that basement was a nightclub, a rock ’n’ roll club.”

The detectives also said they found a 1969 dime at the scene, which indicated when the crime occurred.

Along with her body, she was buried with a plastic toy soldier, which detectives believe may have belonged to a child that McGlone had given birth to.

While it is over 50 years since McGlone was believed to have been murdered and her body hidden away, detectives are not giving up on identifying the killer.

"With any investigation, any especially homicide investigation, the first thing you need to have is a name to the victim because it gives you a starting point," Mr Glas explained to the outlet.

While no suspect has been named, the detective told the New York Post that the teen’s husband was linked to the building where her body was found.

“We’re still working on getting information on him, trying to verify what his situation was with her,” Mr Glas said. “At this point in the investigation, what I can say is, he does have a connection to where she was found.”

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