This article was originally posted on December 28, 2018, and has been updated as of May 20, 2020.
On Sunday morning, September 25, 1988, a man looking for cypress lumber in a wooded, marshy area in Lake County, Florida came across a woman’s body. It is likely that she was dragged to the location she was discovered, possibly from the side of the road. The woman had been deceased for many
Jane Doe’s nearly skeletonized remains were taken to the C. A. Pound Human Identification Laboratory (CAPHIL), a part of the University of Florida’s Department of Anthropology. There, world-famous forensic anthropologist Dr. William Maples performed an examination. At the time she was found, Dr. Maples was also conducting an analysis of the remains of Spanish explorer Francisco Pizzaro, and the “Elephant Man,” Joseph Merrick. Jane Doe’s remains were in the best possible hands at the time for a thorough and
Her skeleton has been at
Following the revelation of this Jane Doe being transgender, she received two things: her nickname, and a second artistic reconstruction. Her nickname, “Julie,” was given to her by forensic students who were studying her skeleton. They were inspired by the 1995 film To Wong Foo, Thanks For Everything! Julie Newmar. Her second artistic reconstruction was done by forensic artist and Detective Stephen Fusco of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. Mr. Fusco, who is now retired, says he does not remember this case in particular. His renderings are generally considered to be of extremely high quality, and Julie’s drawing was no exception. Many Jane and John Does do not get the kind of care and attention that Mr. Fusco gave each of his drawings, and we would like to thank him again for this reconstruction.
In early summer 2018, the decision was made to conduct more tests on Julie Doe, this time at the FL Institute of Forensic Anthropology and Applied Science at the University of South Florida. Her skull was sent from Gainesville to Tampa so that samples could be taken for isotope analysis.
Shortly thereafter, Julie’s case was taken on by the DNA Doe Project, a non-profit organization that utilizes forensic genealogy to identify John and Jane
The Trans Doe Task Force began our efforts to engage the public and especially the LGBT community about Julie’s story. We began to receive inquiries about other trans cases, and creative ideas about forensic art for transgender Does. In September, one of our followers on social media sent us the following digital manipulations of Mr. Fusco’s drawing, utilizing the popular app “FaceApp“. Another person sent in
By mid-November, a course of action regarding lab work was plotted, and the DNA Doe Project set up Julie’s fundraiser. The TDTF signal boosted their fundraiser on social media, and she was over-funded in under 48 hours. Meanwhile, her isotope analysis had come in from USF, showing that she was likely from the South Florida area. Julie’s DNA was uploaded by DDP to GEDmatch in January of 2020, and their research is ongoing.
We are overjoyed to share with you an amazing new depiction of Julie Doe by renowned forensic artist Carl Koppelman. We would like to thank Carl for this beautiful image.
Thank you to all of the people who have contributed to keeping Julie’s case moving forward. Together, we can uncover her true identity and finally lay her to rest.
By Lee and Anthony Redgrave