Montrose County remains identified as missing Washington woman, sheriff says

The Montrose County Sheriff’s Office identified 28-year-old remains that had been a mystery for decades after being found at Windy Point in July of 1994.

The remains were identified as belonging to Susan Hoppes, who was reported as a missing person in Pierce County, Wash., on Aug. 9, 1993, the sheriff’s office said.

The Colorado Bureau of Investigations was employed in August 2020 to use advanced DNA testing technology to connect the remains of Windy Point Jane Doe with a family member in order to identify the victim. On April 19, 2022, the sheriff’s office received a call that the remains were identified as Hoppes’.

Windy Point Jane Doe was first found on the Uncompahgre Plateau in the area of Windy Point by a citizen who was hiking in the area with family on July 7, 1994, and the investigation has been ongoing since then.

The Montrose County Coroner has made notification of next of kin to the Hoppes family and deputies are investigating the case as a homicide. Investigators are also working in Washington to gather information, the sheriff’s office said.

“It is truly remarkable that technology was able to give closure to the family of Susan Hoppes and to all that was involved in the case,” Sheriff Gene Lillard wrote in a statement. “It has always been a goal to determine who she was and what actually happened to her.”

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