GEORGETOWN, Texas - A cemetery on the east side of Georgetown is where, years ago, the bodies of unidentified people were buried. It’s here where investigators believed the graves of two high profile cold case murder victims were located.
But when the families of Debra Jackson, once known as Orange Socks, and Sue Anne Huskey, the Corona Girl, were called together in January for a news conference about their identification, Williamson County Sheriff Robert Chody was surprised they couldn’t take them to the bodies.
Sue Ann Huskey, also known as "Corona Girl" (Williamson County Sheriff's Office)
“This was an unexpected twist for us,” said Chody.
The sheriff gave his detectives a new assignment.
“The message was, whether we can do this or not, we have to try and you have a week to find out if we know the bodies are at, and if not we have to convey that message to the family right away,” said Chody.
A specific section of the cemetery near an old shed was focused on. That shed would eventually factor into the search for Detective Jason Cox and the Cold Case Unit. Not knowing for sure where the bodies were troubled Cox.
“It does eat at you and it does drive you,” said Cox.
After a lot of work, investigators are now pretty confident a headstone for an unknown woman is close to the grave of Debra Jackson. It’s believed the body of Sue Ann Huskey is in an unmarked grave next to Jackson.
“Based on everything we have right now we are quite positive they are where, we believe that they are,” said Cox.
Family members were notified on Monday. On Tuesday morning FOX7 spoke to Tasha Marie Webb, Huskey’s sister, by phone.
“It was very, very, heart-wrenching it was I could say unexplainable, it was so nice to know that she was found, still kind of in shock, but glad to know that we have found her,” said Webb.
The problem investigators had to overcome was bad record-keeping. No one knew exactly where the graves were because there are no official records available. The only person who really did know, the caretaker, had it in his head, but he had passed away. Investigators did catch a break; there were others, still alive, involved in the original case, and they tracked down.
“We tracked down the original grave digger and took him out there, we went through the process and steps of anyone who had anything to do with the burial or was there at the time at the burial,” said Cox.
They found the original lead investigator and brought him back to town. They even tracked down the priest who did the graveside service. The biggest clue was found in the library at Southwestern University. It was located in the microfilm section, where images from the local newspaper are kept. Articles about the murders were scanned. Days and months blurred by until one from late 1989 caught everyone’s eye.
“When we finally found the picture, in the article that was a eureka moment,” said Cox.
The picture shows investigators standing by the grave of the woman who would be later called Corona Girl. In the background, you can also see the shed. The next step required a little math.
“So with the photographs, specifically with the building in the background, that is still there we were able to go back out to the scene, do some triangulation and try to re-create the photo today to make sure that photo taken in the exact area where we believe our two victims to be, and it matched up,” said Cox.
The sheriff's office has secured donations for headstones. The cases have not been closed as the search for those who killed the women continues.