Ode to Doe : Horseshoe Harriet

Alaska Serial Killer-Victim

The remains of a young woman, likely in her late teens or early twenties, was found on April 25, 1984. Her body was discovered  in a shallow grave near Horseshoe Lake in Palmer, Alaska. Now, if this is sounding a little familiar, that is because like Eklutna Annie’ ( the subject of my last Ode to Doe) she was the victim of serial killer Robert Hansen. Named for her grave site, she is one of the last of Hansen’s seventeen victims. Only one of only two unidentified bodies in Alaska.

Horseshoe Harriet was likely 5’2″ to  5’6″ and between the ages of 19 and 20 when she was murdered. She had brown hair and may have been a smoker. Like his other victims she likely suffered brutal rape and was hunted like an animal woods of Alaska. She was found to have been stabbed four times in the back as well as being shot four times. Along with her remains police recovered a wool scarf, nylon bra, a knit coat and sweater, blue jeans, wool socks, leg warmers, and tennis shoes. She was also found with four golden rings, cigarettes, a comb, a compact, and condoms. She was buried in Anchorage Memorial Park cemetery under the title Jane Doe #3. In September 2014 The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children paid to have ‘Harriet’ exhumed for additional forensic examination. 

The original hope was to compose a facial reconstruction to aid in identifying the victim. Following information on a missing child in Alaska, they wish to possibly find a link and ultimately to give closure to the family of ‘Horseshoe Harriet’. The hoped to have a facial reconstruction publicized to aid in her identification within 6 months. Unfortunately, the state of the girls remains made facial reconstruction impossible. However, DNA was salvageable. Her DNA was not on record, but is now on file with the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System. Family members of missing individuals are encouraged to submit a DNA sample for comparison. While they hope to find the mother and father, any close relative would be a break through. As for new she remains nameless.

Anyone with information possibly regarding the 30 year mystery is urged to have they’re DNA compared, and/or to contact Stephen Hoage at the Alaska ME office at 907-334-2200 regarding case number 14-01032.


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