Ginger Lynn Bibb

Ginger Lynn Bibb has been known only as Jane Doe for almost 16 years. 

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) – The Phoenix Police Department teamed up with the DNA Doe Project (DDP) to use genetic genealogy to identify a woman whose body was found in west Phoenix in 2004. Ginger Lynn Bibb has been known only as Jane Doe for almost 16 years. Because police could not identify Bibb, her case went cold.

Police said Bibb’s body was found near 43rd Avenue and Baseline Road on April 21, 2004. According to DDP, an ROTC cleanup crew discovered a rolled-up carpet on the side of the road. Skeletal remains were inside. At the time, very little information was available. The remains were those of a white woman between 35 and 50 years old. She was between 5 feet, 1 inch, and 5 feet, 5 inches tall, and had brown hair, according to DDP. The organization also said she had trauma to her face and neck that was healing and had nothing to do with her death.

Fingerprints gave Phoenix police investigators nothing. There was little they could do with the scant information they had.

Fast-forward 15 years to April 2019. Detective Stuart Somershoe of the Phoenix Police Department’s Missing and Unidentified Persons Unit enlisted DDP and its team of volunteer genetic genealogists. Less than 48 hours later, they had a lead from the GEDmatch database, which helped lead authorities to arrest the former California police officer believed to be Golden State Killer in 2018.

“Ginger’s DNA matches were not very close, but our team was lucky and found a link between families which helped us to solve her case quickly,” DDP team leader Cairenn Binder explained in a news release. Somershoe contacted Bibb’s family, and they agreed to take part in DNA testing. Those results confirmed what DDP, which is a nonprofit organization “whose mission is to identify John and Jane Does and return them to their families” suspected. The remains were those of Bibb. She is one of more than two dozen people DDP has successfully identified.

Genetic genealogy is exactly what it sounds likes. It combines DNA test results with traditional genealogy research methods to determine how subjects might be related and build a family tree.

If you know anything about what happened to Bibb, please contact call Silent Witness at either 480-WITNESS (948-6377) or 1-800-343-TIPS (8477). Spanish speakers may call 480-TESTIGO (837-8446). (Click or tap phone number to call from this story on your mobile device.)


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