Police May Have Found Remains of Woman Missing Since 1997

They were tipped off by a convicted kidnapper
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 19, 2016 11:58 AM CDT
Police May Have Found Remains of Woman Missing Since 1997
Authorities search for human remains in a field near Houston earlier this month. On Friday, they found what may be the skeletal remains of a 17-year-old missing since 1997.   (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Houston police—with the help of a convicted kidnapper—may have found the remains of a Texas teenager missing for nearly 20 years, the Houston Chronicle reports. Jessica Cain was 17 when she disappeared after a high school musical cast party in 1997. On Friday, police found what they believe could be Cain's skeletal remains in a horse pasture. According to KTRK, police had been searching the field for 25 days after receiving a tip from William Reece. Reece is serving a 60-year sentence for kidnapping a woman, but he's been linked to at least five murders and kidnappings—all taking place in 1997, KHOU reports.

Teams are still working to uncover the remains, which were found at least four feet underground. They need to get every bone they can in order to reconstruct the body. "Right now, we have no clue who this person is," Det. Richard Martinez tells the Chronicle. "If it is not Jessica Cain, we have to find out who it is." Authorities are unsure how long it will take to ID the remains. Next week, police plan to start digging at a second site were they believe Reece may have buried another body. (More missing person stories.)

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