SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — A woman who was killed nearly 20 years ago and whose body was found in 2008 was identified through Genetic Genealogy Investigation, according to a Facebook post from the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office.
In March of 2008, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office Communications Center received a call stating that possible human remains were found near Tyler Island and the Georgianna Slough, in Sacramento County, the post said.
When deputies arrived at the scene, they confirmed the human remains and had the Sheriff’s Homicide Investigators come to the scene. For the following three days, with the help of the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Laboratory of Forensic Services and the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office, the homicide investigators processed the scene. The coroner then “classified homicide and determined the victim was most likely killed in the fall of 2004.”
According to the post, “over the past 13 years, Sheriff’s Investigators and the Coroner’s Office have worked to identify the victim.” During the investigation, officials reviewed hundreds of Missing Person reports and provided the media with photographs of the clothing and jewelry that the victim was wearing.
They also provided the media with a drawing of what they believed the victim may have looked like, and used the victim’s skull for a facial reconstruction.
Despite all their efforts, the victim remained unidentified.
In 2021, investigators then began a Genetic Genealogy Investigation.
Due to the Genetic Genealogy Investigation, the victim was identified as Shannon Vielguth who was born in 1969.
According to the post, investigators found that Vielguth used many different last names including, “Judkins, Hutchings and Joyce.” Investigators also found that Vielguth was homeless for “about 6 months prior to her murder, staying in Missouri, Oklahoma, Kentucky, Colorado, Nevada, and California.”
Investigators said that Vielguth was most likely in Reno and Sacramento in October of 2004, which coincides with the time frame that she was killed.