St. Petersburg Police Department
WHO IS JANE DOE? IINVESTIGATOR SOLVES 42 YEAR MYSTERY
On the early morning hours of June 9th, 1973, a teen aged girl was struck by a vehicle in the 800 block of 11th Avenue South and died from her injuries. Detectives who investigated the death eventually charged a man with having pushed the girl in front the car after an altercation, but the charges were later dropped by the State Attorney who was unable to prove the man’s intent. The girl, who detectives were certain was not from the area, was unable to be positively identified despite having been in contact with police officers in the days before her death. She remained as a “Jane Doe” to police and the medical examiner, and she was eventually buried at Memorial Park Cemetery in an unmarked grave.
Through the years the case remained open and the victim, unidentified.
In 2006, Investigator Brenda Stevenson began looking into cold case for the St. Petersburg Police Department. She reviewed the case of Jane Doe and searched missing person’s cases from throughout Florida and across the country in an attempt to bring a name to the young victim and closure to a family in search of a loved one. By 2010, Investigator Stevenson discussed with the Medical Examiner’s Office the possibility of exhuming Jane Doe’s body in the hope that evolving DNA science might finally identify the teen.
The Medical Examiner’s Office contacted University of South Florida Anthropology Professor Erin Kimmerle, and a joint effort was undertaken to exhume the bodies of Jane Doe and two other unidentified victims, all buried in so called pauper’s graves at Memorial Park. DNA samples were taken from the remains and a profile was established for each. Investigator Stevenson continued to search out cases of missing young women that might prove to be Jane Doe.
In 2013, Investigator Stevenson was contacted by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). It publicized the case of Jane Doe in the hopes that someone might recognize the girl. The National Center placed a post on FaceBook On October 8, 2014, titled: “Do you recognize this teenage girl who was in St. Petersburg, Florida, in 1973?” The post
provided key information about the unidentified girl, including the name she had given police during the encounter in the days before her death: Janice Marie Brock.
More than three months passed, when January 28, 2015, the St. Petersburg Police Department received a call from Timothy Young in Monroe, North Carolina. Young told Investigator Stevenson that he had been searching for his sister, Janice Marie Young, also known as Marie, since 1973. Mr. Young said that his sister ran away from their home in Newport News, Virginia, and was never seen or heard from again. He went on to tell Investigator Stevenson that the siblings had been adopted in January 1969, and that their birth last name was legally changed from Brock to Young.
Mr. Young had searched for his sister under their adopted name of Young through the years, until he decided to search the Internet using his sister’s birth last name of Brock. He found the artist composite of Jane Doe and realized the composite looked like to be his sister.
He agreed to give a DNA sample and it was confirmed, Jane Doe was his 17 year old sister, Janice Marie Young, who ran away in 1973. He plans to take her remains home and give her a proper memorial and burial.
Hear some of Investigator Stevenson's comments on the case: https://youtu.be/v8F0Ix1CBQd