ALEXANDRIA, Va. — More than 50 years ago, a young woman drowned in a motel pool, her identity still remains a mystery. Now the Pecos Police Department is working with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children to release a new facial reconstruction showing what the woman looked like while she was alive.
The young woman was found in the Ropers Motel pool in Pecos, Texas. The town, at the time had a population of nearly 13,000 people and was well traveled by visitors on Interstate 20 and Highway 285, two major roadways that run through the center of town. The closest big city, El Paso, is a three hour drive west from this small city. Ropers Motel is still in existence, albeit much different than it was 50 years ago, but the search for Jane Doe’s identity is still going strong.
On July 5, 1966 a young couple checked into Ropers Motel around 2 pm under the names “Mr. and Mrs. Russell Battoun.” The man is believed to have been around 25 years old had a slender build and short blonde hair. The young woman believed to have been between 17-20 years old, 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighed around 120 pounds was wearing a pair of dark shorts and a flowered blouse. Several hours after the couple checked in tragedy struck. While the male companion was taking a nap in the hotel room, the female went down to the pool to go swimming a short time later a hotel employee found the woman’s lifeless body in the pool. Hotel staff called an ambulance, but it was too late the woman was dead. As Jane Doe was being taken away in an ambulance her companion checked out from the hotel asking for the registration card back, packing up their belongings and leaving in a late model sedan never to be seen again.
Even after all this time the young woman with no name has not been forgotten. The Pecos Police Department has a new Chief of Police Lisa Tarango who is carrying on the search retired Chief Clay McKinney had begun. Chief Tarango has assigned Cpl. Felix Salcido to continue the search for the identity of the young girl. She is buried with a gravestone marked, ‘Unknown Girl Drowned July 5, 1966” and this year on the anniversary of her death Pecos Police Department officials visited her grave and brought flowers.
The image put together by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children shows what Jane Doe looked like during her life. If anyone has information about Jane Doe contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST / 1-800-843-5678 or the Pecos Police Department at 432-445-4911 attention Cpl. Felix Salcido.