TOP PHOTO: A giant step was taken toward solving a Campbell County cold case.

By Charlotte Underwood 

JACKSBORO, TN (WLAF) – After 24 years, the body of a woman found murdered and dumped along Stinking Creek Road has been identified. The investigation into her death remains open and active, according to law enforcement. The body was originally found by Ove Shupe who was out collecting cans on the side of the road back in 1998.  According to the reports, he “flagged someone down and had them call the Sheriff’s department.”

The body was identified by her fingerprints as Lori A. Alexander of Toledo, Ohio.  

Campbell County Sheriff’s Defective Sgt. Ken Daugherty (left) is with Campbell County Sheriff Robbie Goins.

Campbell County Sheriff Robbie Goins and Campbell County Sheriff’s Defective Sgt. Ken Daugherty announced the victim’s identity at a 2 p.m. press conference held Thursday afternoon at the Sheriff’s Office.  Connect HERE to see and hear the full press conference.

According to officials, it was “advanced fingerprinting technology”, which led to her identification. The Knox County Regional Forensic Center had sent the finger prints to the FBI several years ago, and the FBI “upgraded their finger printing system, allowing them to read prints that previously had been unreadable,” according to Daugherty. After the positive identification, the victim’s family was notified by the sheriff’s department. 

“After we had a name, we were able to contact the family and give them some type of closure. I know it’s not full closure, but it’s knowing that their loved one was located and at least they can lay them to rest,” Sheriff Goins said.

Lori A. Alexander will no longer be known as “Jane Doe 98,” a title which stemmed from the fact that her body had been found October 25th of that year. 

Detective Sgt. Ken Daugherty has been working this particular cold case since May of 2016, but the case has “haunted” multiple detectives over the last two decades.  

Detective Sgt. Daugherty said he had been in contact with the victims mother and that she had been “relieved to know her daughter had at least been located.”

Law enforcement had little to nothing to go on due to the decomposition of the body. About all they knew at the time was that she was a black female under 40 with stab wounds and a gunshot wound. Decades passed, still without many leads, though not for a lack of investigation and effort. Her body was exhumed in 2013 by the Knox County Regional Forensic Center and a post mortem autopsy was performed in a continued investigation into her identity and homicide, according to Daugherty. 

After Daugherty took the case over in 2016, he began cross searching other state databases for DNA matches and missing persons that could match his cold case. However, a missing person report had never been filed on Alexander, and she had never been entered into any databases.

Which is why Daugherty urges those with a missing loved one to file a report and have them entered into a national database, which aids law enforcement.

Detective Sgt. Daugherty said it felt great to have a name to go on with this cold case.

“Every Detective has a case they know they have to solve and this one’s still mine; I’m going to continue this investigation until I do.”

Now that officials have a name, the “investigation is ramping up,” according to Daugherty, who said while they don’t have suspects in the case, there “are leads in the investigation.” He also has asked that anyone with knowledge of the case to please contact the Campbell County Sheriff’s Department at 423.562.7446. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 06/03/2022-6AM)