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UNIDENTIFIED

A decade after bones found, woman's identity remains mystery

Posted on June 7, 2021

Local news
These shooes were found with the body of an unidentified woman discovered in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

Contributed photo

These shooes were found with the body of an unidentified woman discovered in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

This forensic sketch shows the likely appearance of an unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

Contributed photo

This forensic sketch shows the likely appearance of an unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

An unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods on March 17, 2011, was wearing this white Virginia Beach souvenir T-shirt accented with a pink flower.

Contributed photo

An unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods on March 17, 2011, was wearing this white Virginia Beach souvenir T-shirt accented with a pink flower.

These shooes were found with the body of an unidentified woman discovered in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

Contributed photo

These shooes were found with the body of an unidentified woman discovered in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

This forensic sketch shows the likely appearance of an unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

Contributed photo

This forensic sketch shows the likely appearance of an unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

This forensic sketch shows the likely appearance of an unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods in 2011.
An unidentified woman found in the Charlotte woods on March 17, 2011, was wearing this white Virginia Beach souvenir T-shirt accented with a pink flower.
These shooes were found with the body of an unidentified woman discovered in the Charlotte woods in 2011.

Unidentified is a weekly series examining the more than 120 cases of unidentified human remains discovered in North Carolina. Reporter Lindell J. Kay produces each installment for The Enterprise of Spring Hope and other Restoration NewsMedia newspapers.

Click the hyperlinked text below to read previous installments:

 Dozens of bodies found across NC remain mysteries

 'Baby John Nash' killing remains unsolved

 Drowning victim remains unknown

 Man who stepped in front of train still unknown 

 Body dumped on interstate remains mystery 

 Few clues found in skeleton case 

 Tattoo may hold key clue in unsolved homicide 

 Unknown woman stabbed to death 

Few clues in unknown homeless man's death 

lkay@springhopeenterprise.com | 252-265-8117

Blair Fitch knows the importance of the initial two days in a homicide investigation.

A detective with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Fitch has been featured on A&E’s “The First 48,” a long-running crime docuseries about the beginning and most crucial moments of a murder case.

Originally from Florida, Fitch joined the CMPD in 2000. He said his greatest moments as a detective are when he calls a victim’s family members to tell them an arrest has been made in their loved one’s case.

But in his most baffling whodunit, Fitch doesn’t know the victim’s identity, let alone who her relatives are.

A long way from the early hours of the probe, Fitch has been trying for a decade to identify the body of a slain woman discovered discarded in the woods off of Interstate 485.

Found wearing a white T-shirt with a pink flower and the words “Virginia Beach Virginia” printed on the front, she had been dead for around a year.

“We can never give up,” Fitch said. “We don’t know what technology is coming down the line that could help solve this case.”

Whether washed ashore, unearthed in shallow graves, stumbled upon in the woods, discovered in abandoned houses, killed on busy roads or located in rivers, ponds and along railroad tracks, more than 120 bodies remain unidentified in North Carolina. This is one of their stories.

CMPD North Division officers received a call for service March 17, 2011, in reference to a work crew finding the skeletal remains in the woods off a road closed to public access.

“We got bones, which doesn’t tell us a lot, but given the location, it’s suspicious,” Fitch said. “We are treating this as a homicide.”

From the start of the investigation, Fitch has been the lead detective assigned to the case.

“We don’t know if this is human trafficking or related to drugs,” Fitch said.

In an attempt to generate leads, Fitch and other detectives with the department’s Homicide Unit and the Davidson Police Department worked with anthropology professors to create a forensic reconstruction of the woman’s skull.

The detectives released a sketch in 2016.

The woman in the Virginia Beach T-shirt was white, possibly Hispanic, and between the ages of 20 and 30. Her height couldn’t be estimated, but she’s believed to have been around 110 pounds.

Along with the T-shirt, the woman wore size small blue denim jeans and a black bra, size 36B. She wore Navy and plaid boat canvas shoes, boys size 4.

No fingerprints are available, but DNA and dental records are on file with the N.C. Office of the State Medical Examiner.

Two missing women have been excluded: Hope Curry of Virginia, born in 1977; and Zoe Hope of North Carolina, born in 1987.

The National Missing and Unidentified Persons System ranks the case as having a high potential for identification. The woman in the Virginia Beach T-shirt has been assigned the number 8724 in the NamUs database.

Anyone with information about the woman is asked to call the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Homicide Unit at 704-432-TIPS, Charlotte Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600 or Team Cold Case at 252-406-6736. A monetary reward is available.

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