Remains of Pennsylvania teen missing since 1969 identified

Remains of Pennsylvania teen missing since 1969 identified

Posted For: Willie Wonka 

By Olivia Land

Human remains found almost 10 years ago in Pennsylvania have been identified as those of a young woman who disappeared in 1969, police said Tuesday.

The remains of Joan Marie Dymond, 14, were found on the grounds of a former coal mining site in Newport Township, near Wilkes-Barre, in November 2012.

Initially known as Jane “Newport” Doe, the teen was determined to have died from foul play.

In March 2022, the Criminal Investigation Unit of the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) submitted the remains to Othram, a forensic genealogy company.

Lab results delivered earlier this month indicated the remains belonged to Dymond.

“We never stopped pursuing answers,” Pennsylvania State Police Capt. Patrick Dougherty said in a statement.

Dymond was last seen on June 25, 1969. She reportedly told her family she was going to Andover Street Park near her home in Wilkes-Barre, and never returned.

“She was a typical teenager,” Dymond’s sister Suzanne Estock told reporters Tuesday.

“She was a sweet girl, [and she] didn’t deserve what happened to her.”

The last time Estock spoke to her sister, the teenager was excited about becoming an aunt.

“The last time I spoke with her, I was pregnant, I was due in August,” Estock said. “She was excited about … me having a baby and coming down to visit.”

PSP is now asking for the public’s assistance in determining what happened to Dymond.

“After 53 years, the family of Joan Marie Dymond very much deserves closure. We will do everything in our power to see that they have it,” Dougherty insisted.

Estock is also hoping to finally learn what happened to her sister.

“Maybe we could find who did this to her. It’s a shame somebody so young and with her whole life ahead of her was taken,” she said.

“I would have had a sister up until now.”

Dymond’s identification is the latest in a spate of cold case results dug up using advanced DNA technology. Last month, The Post reported on the identification of Patricia Agnes Gildawie, a teenager who went missing in Virginia in 1975.

With the victims’ names restored, police have a greater chance of solving their murders. Even so, some experts warn against the use of widespread DNA testing, arguing that law enforcement can use an individual’s genetic material in investigations without their consent.

“It’s the Wild West,” cautioned Albert Fox Cahn, executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project.

“We have no idea how these tools are being used.”

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