VAN BUREN COUNTY, Michigan (WOOD) – It’s been 30 years since a hunter stumbled upon the skeletal remains of a woman off I-96 in Paw Paw, Michigan.
For all those years, the woman was known only as “I96 Jane.”
Now, she finally has a name.
After three decades, authorities working with the DNA Doe Project have identified the skeletal remain as Marcia Kaylynn Bateman from Oklahoma City.
Authorities say they were able to make the identification by submitting a femur bone to be compared against DNA submitted to a public genealogy database.
After a substantial lead was obtained, Michigan authorities reached out to Bateman’s family and friends in Oklahoma City. Her family had filed a missing persons report in 1988.
According to the DNA Doe Project, Bateman had been living on the streets. She was known to travel to Dallas and Los Angeles to visit family and friends and may have been to these cities before she disappeared. She was reported missing by her family in August 1988 and hadn’t been seen since May of that year.
The DNA Doe Project was instrumental in helping to identify the remains of a woman found in 2006 in Kilgore and identified as “Lavender Doe” as Dana Lynn Dodd.
Joseph Wayne Burnette confessed to her murder and the murder of another woman, Felisha Pearson, in 2018.
Police have now classified Bateman’s case as a death investigation and are working to determine how she died.
Over the years, police had compiled a number of busts depicting Bateman hoping someone would come forward with information about the case.
According to authorities, their investigation centers now on how the then 28-year-old came to Michigan and how she died.