Investigators still looking for answers in 30-year-old murder of Jessica Harris

For three decades, the Williamson County Sheriff's Office has been trying to solve the murder of 24-year-old Jessica Harris. 

On August 2nd, 1994, a resident was checking their fence line when he found a dead body on his property.

"The body was off the roadway and kind of in some taller grass," said WCSO Det. Mark McKinney. "He contacted the sheriff's office immediately, and the sheriff's office responded to investigate it."

The body belonged to Jessica Lee Harris, a South Austin native, now dumped on the side of County Road 245 in Williamson County. The medical examiner ruled her death a homicide and that she had been strangled, says Det. McKinney.


"She hadn't been there too long. Her body was not in an advanced stage of decomposition," he said.

Detectives were able to identify her through her fingerprints with the help of the AFIS (Automated Fingerprint Identification System) database.

Harris's mother, Joyce Harris, recently passed away, but spoke with FOX 7 Austin in 2018 about the last time she saw Jessica.

"I hugged her and I said...(pause)...I didn't want to do this. I hugged her and I said, I'm making your favorite dinner. She liked porkchops," Joyce Harris said.

After dinner, Jessica was picked up by a friend, and they headed to sixth street.

"So some of the bars that Jessica was known to frequent prior to her death around Austin, were the Backroom, Black Cat and Joe's Generic Bar," Det. McKinney said.

What detectives want to know is how and why she ended up in Georgetown.

"As far as we know, we're actually looking for a tie to this area. She did not have any known association with the Georgetown area. She was primarily in and around Austin," said Det. McKinney.

Anyone with any information on the murder of Jessica Harris is asked to contact the Williamson County Sheriff's Office at 512-943-5204 or contact Williamson County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-253-7867 or online at