In November 1982, a hunter found a human skull in the remote woods of Newport, Washington.
The Pend Orville County Sheriff’s Office began investigating, but the case surrounding the random skull went cold.
Seventeen years later, the sheriff’s office undersheriff, Mike Cress, found the skull in a box. He tried to gather as much information about the skull — and the case — but had no luck.
Another 18 years went by, and it wasn’t until March 2017 that the mysterious skull was sent to the Washington State Forensic Anthropologist at the King County Medical Examiner’s Office. Through their investigations, they were able to determine the skull belonged to an adult female. Dental and fingerprint records were not available.
Information about the skull was entered into NamUs, the national missing and unidentified persons system, and a section of the skull was sent for DNA extraction to be uploaded to the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System (CODIS). No matches were made in either system.
In October 2022, a section of the skull was sent to Othram Labs — a lab that dubs themselves as “a revolution in cold case solution.”
Othram lab technicians were able to develop a DNA profile and uploaded it to GEDMatch and FamilyTreeDNA. Forty years after the skull was found, they got a match of the DNA profile to the woman’s great granddaughter.
The skull belonged to Mildred Allison Hubertz. She had disappeared from St. Ignatius, Montana in 1968. Her family said she was 59 years old when she went missing.
It’s unclear if she was ever reported missing or the circumstances around her disappearance.
The Pend Orville County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information about Hubertz, or her family, to call Sergeant Mitch Parnell at 509-447-1991.
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