MSP looks to solve 1988 mystery: Who is ‘196 Jane’?

Southwest Michigan
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Busts of ‘196 Jane,’ whose remains were discovered in Covert Township in 1988.

COVERT TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan State Police detectives are hoping new artistic renderings and findings will help them solve the cold case death of a female known only as “196 Jane.”

A hunter discovered her skeletal remains along I-196 at County Road 378 in Van Buren County’s Covert Township on Oct. 12, 1988.

Detectives believe she died between April and August, months before her remains were found.

Police say the female showed signs of osteopenia, which is a precursor to osteoporosis. Osteopenia can be caused by drinking excessive amounts of alcohol, smoking, eating disorders, long-term steroid use, vitamin deficiencies and teenage pregnancy, according to MSP.

Detectives believe 196 Jane had given birth to at least one child. They say she was likely between 18 and 30 years old, but she could have been as young as 15 or as old as 40 years.

State police say 196 Jane was approximately 5 feet tall, weighed 100 pounds and had brown hair. They say she had good oral hygiene, but may have not seen a dentist for a few years.

Anyone with information regarding 196 Jane’s real identity is encouraged to contact Detective Sgt. Scott Ernstes at 269.657.5551.



NamUs: 196 Jane case

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