Suicide of Holly Glynn

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Holly Glynn
Holly Glynn.jpg
School portrait of Holly Glynn, circa 1984
Born Holly Jo Glynn
September 11, 1966
Died September 20, 1987 (1987-09-21) (aged 21)
Dana Point, Orange County, California
Cause of death Suicide by jumping
Other names Dana Point Jane Doe
Known for Former unidentified decedent

Holly Jo Glynn[1] (previously known as the Dana Point Jane Doe or locally as Jane Doe 87-04457-EL)[2] was a formerly unidentified American woman who is believed to have committed suicide in 1987 by jumping off a cliff in Dana Point, California. Her true identity was not discovered until 2015.[3][4] In 2015, concerns were expressed by friends of Glynn that the unidentified woman may have been their childhood friend, whom they were unable to locate. Glynn was subsequently identified as the Jane Doe in May 2015.[2]


Crime scene photograph taken at the top of the cliff
Original facial reconstruction of the Dana Point Jane Doe

Her body was discovered by joggers in the morning of September 20, 1987, within hours of her death. Examination indicated that she was a young Caucasian woman, between 18 and 23 years old, standing at 5 feet 3 inches (1.60 m) to 5 feet 8 inches (1.73 m) and weighed 127 pounds (58 kg). Her hair was strawberry-blond or light brown and long, reaching the middle of her back. She had no tattoos, distinct scars or birthmarks, although she did have freckles and healed acne marks on her back.[5][6] She had pierced ears, dental fillings, an A positive blood type and may have carried a child at one time during her life.[4][6] It was also possible that she had, at one stage in her life, worn braces.[7] She wore a tan dress, men's underwear and turquoise-colored shoes, all of which were believed to have either been second-hand clothing or hand-me-downs.[6] At the top of the cliff, a can of Coca-Cola, a purse containing coins, a packet of cigarettes and a map were found. A cab company's phone number was written on the map, which was later used by investigators to contact a driver who had apparently provided transportation to a female who matched her description.[3]

Witness account[edit]

Glynn called the cab company at 4 a.m. and asked to be picked up from a hotel in Mission Viejo in southern Orange County.[8] A taxi driver claiming the woman in question had been a fare of his stated she told him that her car had broken down (although no abandoned vehicles were located in the area), and that she had requested to be transported for as far as $18 would bring her, as she could not afford to be taken to Laguna Beach, California.[4] He described her as appearing unhappy and largely uncommunicative. Before this, the woman was seen at the cab company and had used the bathroom.[5] After dropping her off at the intersection of Cove Road and Scenic Drive, the driver saw the decedent walking toward the cliff, which was the last time she was reported to have been seen alive.[6][8]

Death and investigation[edit]

2014 reconstruction created by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children

It is believed that the woman climbed over a fence at the cliff and jumped.[9] Other theories included that she may have been pushed or accidentally fallen.[3] She initially survived the fall and had moved somewhat before her death, leaving impressions similar to that of a snow angel.[8]

The purse in the Dana Point Jane Doe's possession was embossed with a woman's name, Carol Pinkham. Authorities proceeded to search for women who had the name, all of whom were still alive. One told investigators that her purse, the same color as the one owned by the Jane Doe, was stolen 12 years earlier, in 1975.[5][7] Pinkham did not know who had committed the theft, and no person has ever been charged or identified as the thief.[10] The body of the Dana Point Jane Doe was eventually cremated and buried at sea.[8]

In efforts to trigger recognition from those who may have seen the victim in life, a sketch of the woman was created by a forensic artist from the Orange County Police Department.[2] The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children later released a rendering in 2014.[6]

2015 developments[edit]

Glynn was identified in May 2015 after friends from Whittier, California, unable to find their friend through social media or through other conventional means, reported to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) and the Doe Network in 2011 that they believed the Dana Point Jane Doe was Holly Glynn. Eventually, the friend contacted the "Help ID Me" page on Facebook, managed by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, and reported it in 2014. The Orange County Sheriff’s Department Coroner Division contacted the surviving relatives of Holly Glynn and DNA comparisons were conducted.[11] It was eventually announced by Unsolved Mysteries that Glynn was identified through the DNA comparison.[1][2]


  1. ^ a b "Jane Doe". Unsolved Mysteries. 2015. Retrieved 19 June 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d "87-04457-EL". Orange County Sheriff Department. Retrieved 25 May 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c "Identity Of Dana Point "Jane Doe" Still A Mystery Twenty-Five Years Later". Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c "Did a woman fall to her death off a cliff or was she murdered?". Unsolved Mysteries. Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c "Case File: 23UFCA". The Doe Network. Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "Jane Doe 1987". National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Retrieved 12 August 2014. 
  7. ^ a b "Dana Point Jane Doe, CA". Retrieved 12 July 2014. 
  8. ^ a b c d Brazil, Jeff (26 April 1994). "The Search for Names of the Dead : Orange County has a striking number of John and Jane Does who were neither poor nor loners. Many left clues--a room key, a bus ticket--that torment investigators trying to find out who they were.". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 3 January 2015. 
  9. ^ "Dana Point : Body of Young Woman Found in Dana Point". Los Angeles Times. 21 September 1987. Retrieved 14 October 2014. 
  10. ^ Needham, John (17 August 1989). "ID-ing the Dead : Bodies of John and Jane Does Trigger Special Concern Among 34 Members of Coroner's Office". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 6 October 2014. 
  11. ^ "Is Dana Point Jane Doe Holly Glynn of Whittier Elementary?". 

External links[edit]