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Thread: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

  1. #51

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    Miss X Skull closer
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  2. #52

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    The caption to the photo above says:

    Unidentified Skull/ Undersheriff Clarke Cole of Williams, Ariz. stopping in Denver Monday, shows an X-ray of a skull that he had hoped would be identified as that of Connie Smith, 10, grandaughter of a former Wyoming governor, who vanished without trace from a Connecticut YMCA more than 10 years ago. Examination of the skull by a dental surgeon has still not identified the skull, which was found in 1958 near the Grand Canyon.

  3. #53

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    The Billings Gazette
    Tuesday, November 27,1961

    STATEMENT EXPECTED AFTER STUDY OF SKULL


    NEWCASTLE. Wyo. (UPD—
    Authorities at Flagstaff, Ariz,, are
    expected to issue a definite statement
    Tuesday concerning a skeleton
    that mny be the remains of
    10-year-old Connie Smith, who disappeared
    in 1952.
    Connie's father. Peter Smith of
    Newcastle, said Monday, "it is not
    definitely established either way,
    yet," whether the skeleton found
    in Arizona in 1958 is Connie's.
    "We're going to try to assimilate
    the information and give a release
    tomorrow. It will probably be
    available out of the sheriff's office
    in Flagstaff. All doctor's reports
    are being sent to Flagstaff," Smith
    said.
    Doctors and dentists across the
    nation have been contacted in efforts
    to connect the skeleton with
    the little girl who was last seen
    hitching a ride on route 44 in Connecticut
    in 1952. She was attending
    a YWCA camp there,
    A team of Denver doctors who
    examined the bones Saturday said
    they were reasonably certain they
    were Connie's, but after further

    examinations Sunday, announced
    there were "too many inconsistancies"
    to prove definitely.
    A Denver dental surgeon, Dr. David Berman
    said "I think the consensus of opinion
    is that this is not positively the skull
    of Connie Smith." The tentative
    identification Saturday was based on jawbone
    indentation where Connie once had a tooth
    extracted, but Berman said many persons
    have indentations in that area of the
    jawbone.
    The skull and other bones were found in 1958
    by two deer hunters near the Grand Canyon,
    Arizona. Undersheriff Clark Cole said
    whoever the skull belonged to, had probably met
    with foul play as it was found in an inaccessible area.

    Smith said at Newcastle, Monday,
    if the Tuesday findings reveal
    the skeleton was not his daughter's,
    "I will not give up, and will
    still hope she may someday be
    found."
    He said he had always believed
    Connie to be a victim of amnesia
    If the findings prove negative, he
    said, "we will continue to look for
    a tall girl suffering from amnesia."


    Smith is six-feet, seven inches tall
    and Connie's mother, who died
    last year, was six feet tall
    The girl was the granddaughter
    of former Wyoming Gov. Nels

    Smith.
    Last edited by Starless; 06-11-2011 at 09:50 PM.

  4. #54

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    http://azdailysun.com/blogs/criminal...9bb2963f4.html

    Her skeletal remains were found Oct. 31, 1958, on a little hillside off a dirt road on Skinner Ridge south of Grand Canyon National Park.
    Her body was unclothed, prone. The body had been there for nine to 14 months.
    The coroner’s inquest, conducted while Cecil Richardson was Coconino County sheriff, has been lost to time. The name on her case file is “Little Miss X.”
    “But it was investigated as a homicide the whole time,” said Joe Sumner, volunteer investigator for the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office cold case unit.
    The cold case unit is currently working on trying to solve nearly 40 cold cases in the county like the Little Miss X’s. Sumner, who retired from the National Park Service in 2007 as a criminal investigator, came onto the cold case unit in 2008.
    “She’s never been identified,” Sumner said. “This is our oldest case that’s considered a homicide.”
    Complicating the investigation, clothes were found near the body a short time after Little Miss X’s body was discovered. There was also a comb and a nail file case. The clothes did not appear to fit and the nail file case could have belonged to a young woman who went missing the same year out of Southern California named Donis “Pinky” Redman. Redman was eventually excluded. She was 15 and didn't match the physical characteristics of Little Miss X. The car of her boyfriend, Michael Griffin, was found abandoned in Williams.
    Bones found in the old Flagstaff Mortuary several years ago from Williams dating back to the 1960s were thought to belong to Griffin. The bones were exhumed by the Flagstaff Police Department recently, but they were determined not to belong to Griffin.
    Sumner, who said Little Miss X’s case has been popular on the Internet with amateur sleuths, discovered that several young girls were reported missing at the time. Lots of hard work has gone into trying to get Little Miss X identified.
    Excluded from the investigation was the case of Mary M. Begay, 20, who went missing at the South Rim in August 1957. Also excluded was the case of Connie Smith, a 10-year-old girl who went missing in Connecticut in 1952. The body, when it was exhumed in 1962, ruled out that it belonged to Smith.
    To make the investigation more difficult for the cold case unit, there’s a bit of a problem with securing DNA samples for a comparison in the FBI national database.
    “We don’t know where her body is buried,” Sumner said. After the 1962 exhumation, there is no record of where Little Miss X was reburied. He said he believes it is likely back at Citizens Cemetery.
    “We’ve combed over the old burial records of the time and haven’t been able to figure out where she might be,” Sumner said.
    So, what’s the key to the case?
    “The key, of course, is getting her identified,” Sumner said. “It’s frustrating, It could be a case that if we do get her identified, everything else might fall into place.”
    The investigation, although stuck when it comes to securing a DNA sample, is still not dead. There are still detailed dental records, but they are 55 years old.
    “She was well cared for,” Sumner said. “Somebody was missing her at the time.”
    If anybody has information about this case, contact the sheriff’s office cold case division at 774-4523, or visit the Facebook page.

  5. #55

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    Little Miss X

    Age: 13-17, but possibly as young as 11
    Race: Caucasoid, possibly Hispanic
    Height: 5 feet to 5 feet, 3 inches tall
    Weight: About 110 pounds
    Features: Brown skin, dark brown hair bleached to light brown with a permanent wave
    Teeth: Excellent condition with seven fillings
    Current status: Burial location unknown

    Coconino County Sheriff Cecil Richardson and Deputy Johnny Ortiz look over the case file of Little Miss X in this old photo from the sheriff's office. (Coconino County Sheriff's Office/Courtesy photo
    Attached Images Attached Images   
    Last edited by Starless; 10-30-2013 at 07:10 AM.

  6. #56

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    Cold Case Close-up -- File: Little Miss X (1958)


    http://azdailysun.com/blogs/criminal...9bb2963f4.html

    Her skeletal remains were found Oct. 31, 1958, on a little hillside off a dirt road on Skinner Ridge south of Grand Canyon National Park.

    Her body was unclothed, prone. The body had been there for nine to 14 months.

    The coroner’s inquest, conducted while Cecil Richardson was Coconino County sheriff, has been lost to time. The name on her case file is “Little Miss X.”

    “But it was investigated as a homicide the whole time,” said Joe Sumner, volunteer investigator for the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office cold case unit.

    The cold case unit is currently working on trying to solve nearly 40 cold cases in the county like the Little Miss X’s. Sumner, who retired from the National Park Service in 2007 as a criminal investigator, came onto the cold case unit in 2008.

    “She’s never been identified,” Sumner said. “This is our oldest case that’s considered a homicide.”

    Complicating the investigation, clothes were found near the body a short time after Little Miss X’s body was discovered. There was also a comb and a nail file case. The clothes did not appear to fit and the nail file case could have belonged to a young woman who went missing the same year out of Southern California named Donis “Pinky” Redman. Redman was eventually excluded. She was 15 and didn't match the physical characteristics of Little Miss X. The car of her boyfriend, Michael Griffin, was found abandoned in Williams.

    Bones found in the old Flagstaff Mortuary several years ago from Williams dating back to the 1960s were thought to belong to Griffin. The bones were exhumed by the Flagstaff Police Department recently, but they were determined not to belong to Griffin.

    Sumner, who said Little Miss X’s case has been popular on the Internet with amateur sleuths, discovered that several young girls were reported missing at the time. Lots of hard work has gone into trying to get Little Miss X identified.



    Excluded from the investigation was the case of Mary M. Begay, 20, who went missing at the South Rim in August 1957. Also excluded was the case of Connie Smith, a 10-year-old girl who went missing in Connecticut in 1952. The body, when it was exhumed in 1962, ruled out that it belonged to Smith.

    To make the investigation more difficult for the cold case unit, there’s a bit of a problem with securing DNA samples for a comparison in the FBI national database.

    “We don’t know where her body is buried,” Sumner said. After the 1962 exhumation, there is no record of where Little Miss X was reburied. He said he believes it is likely back at Citizens Cemetery.

    “We’ve combed over the old burial records of the time and haven’t been able to figure out where she might be,” Sumner said.

    So, what’s the key to the case?

    “The key, of course, is getting her identified,” Sumner said. “It’s frustrating, It could be a case that if we do get her identified, everything else might fall into place.”

    The investigation, although stuck when it comes to securing a DNA sample, is still not dead. There are still detailed dental records, but they are 55 years old.

    “She was well cared for,” Sumner said. “Somebody was missing her at the time.”

    If anybody has information about this case, contact the sheriff’s office cold case division at 774-4523, or visit the Facebook page.







    Little Miss X




    Little Miss X

    Age: 13-17, but possibly as young as 11
    Race: Caucasoid, possibly Hispanic
    Height: 5 feet to 5 feet, 3 inches tall
    Weight: About 110 pounds
    Features: Brown skin, dark brown hair bleached to light brown with a permanent wave
    Teeth: Excellent condition with seven fillings
    Current status: Burial location unknown

    Last edited by Starless; 03-29-2016 at 07:04 AM.

  7. #57

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona


  8. #58

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    I don't know where to post this. I thought I had a separate thread about Connie Smith but if I do it didn't come up in search so I am posting this here

    https://www.registercitizen.com/news...s-13164163.php

  9. #59

    Default Re: LITTLE MISS X, October 31, 1958, Arizona

    From link above

    LAKEVILLE — It’s been 66 years since Connie Smith disappeared.
    Connie was only 10 and was attending summer camp in the Northwest Corner when she went missing.
    The case remains unsolved, but a new, recent interpretation of the vexing case’s facts by a close family member — combined with the recent rediscovery of human remains thousands of miles away (in the Grand Canyon) — may bring resolution to the 66-year-old cold case.
    Related Stories
    PART 1: Missing Lakeville camper’s case remains unsolved
    Suspect: William Henry Redmond
    Truck drivers were questioned in the disappearance of Connie Smith, as were traveling carnival workers, and gypsies from Arkansas who camped along Route 22 and were hired out as barn painters, according to police reports. Every time a lead was found, Smith boarded the earliest airplane back East, or to California, or to wherever he was needed at the moment.
    One suspect was William Henry Redmond, a former carnival worker who was charged in 1988 with strangling an eight-year-old Pennsylvania girl, Jane Marie Althoff, in 1951, which was one year prior to Connie’s disappearance. Redmond’s arrest came after a cross-reference of Redmond’s fingerprints found in the cab of a truck where Althoff’s body was found with a recent motor-vehicle violation by Redmond, according to police reports.
    It was thought that Redmond may have been in the Lakeville area at the time. A retired Connecticut State Trooper, Leo Turcotte, residing in Florida in 1988, recalled an anonymous phone tip in 1955 from a man in Montreal who said he had worked for a carnival in the Lakeville area and knew about the girl’s disappearance. Redmond, who was 66 in 1988, also allegedly told a fellow prison inmate he had killed four people during his lifetime. Redmond passed a polygraph test concerning the Connie Smith case. He was determined too ill to stand trial for the 1951 Althoff murder, and died in 1992.
    As detailed on Connecticut historian and author John Tuohy’s Blogger.com site’s article “Vanished: What became of Connie Smith?,” a number of women who claimed to be Connie and had amnesia consistently came forth through the years, but were discounted either under interrogation or analysis.
    Suspects: Frederick Pope and Jack Walker
    In April 1953, according to the case’s police report confirmed by Detective Downs, nearly a year after Connie’s disappearance, a traveling jewelry salesman, Frederick Pope, confessed to the Ohio police that he knew where Connie Smith was. Pope alleged that he and an associate, Jack Walker (while traveling with a Rhode Island woman named Wilma Sames) picked Connie up on Route 44, promising Connie a ride back to Wyoming. Pope claimed that Walker killed Connie in Arizona and that Pope himself later beat Walker to death with a tire iron. This all seemed like gold to the Connie Smith case. Upon deeper examination, however, the story fell apart: no records of either Wilma Sames or Jack Walker existed. Pope later admitted the story was a hoax and was dismissed as a suspect.
    The Pope story, however, did yield a significant lead. On Halloween of 1958, an unidentified young girl’s remains were found on Skinner Ridge near Williams, Arizona. In 1962, acting on a tip from a letter received by the Connecticut State Police, a comparison of the teeth of the Arizona child (named Little Miss X) with Connie’s dental records was done and proved inconclusive. In 2004, after the Connecticut State Police collected DNA from the Smith family, but by then the girl’s remains had been reburied and the grave could not be located. That was before recent revelations brought to light that the remains were somewhere in Citizens Cemetery in Flagstaff, Arizona.
    Old memories
    On the continual waiting on any case developments, Dorothy Dike, 78, of British Columbia, Canada, who is Connie’s stepsister (Peter Smith was Dike’s stepfather following the end of his first marriage), has said that it had not been easy for the family. Dike said she would be two years older than Connie today, if Connie were still alive.
    In a recent telephone interview, Dike shared her memories of the missing child: “I knew Connie but I never lived with her,” she said. “But Peter (the father) thought about her all the time, searching everywhere for her. He went back East about calls from people thinking they had found her or from prisoners confessing to her murder.”
    Dike, who now runs a resort in Bowen Island with her husband Rondy, added, “He (Peter) even consulted psychics. He was doing everything he could to try to find his daughter.” She added, “It was a hard thing to go through for the whole family. I was 12; Connie was 10, a couple years younger than me. It was always on our minds.”
    When asked what she thinks happened to her half-sister, Dike said, “I doubt she is alive. It’s been such a long time. I think about her every time I hear on the news about the disappearance of a child.”
    Speculations
    Meaghan Good, 32, of Ohio, has been administrator for The Charley Project website since 2004. The site profiles approximately 10,000 “cold case” missing people, mainly from the U.S., from the 1800s up until now, with 10, 671 cases currently open.
    Good posits that Connie likely met with foul play: “You see this a lot, especially in the 10-to-13 age group,” she said. “They start becoming more independent but they are still pretty naïve.”
    “It is very, very sad,” she said. “The father lived to be a Biblical age and never found out about her. The suspect would likely be dead now. But it is possible for the case to be solved. Technology makes it resolvable.”
    Michael Dooling, author of “Clueless in New England: The Unsolved Disappearances of Paula Welden, Connie Smith and Katherine Hull” published in 2010, said, “Connie’s disappearance — and the others I wrote about — strikes fear in our hearts.”
    Dooling, who is also an antiquarian and a news librarian for the Waterbury Republican-American newspaper, added: “How can a such a nice, normal 10-year-old girl be seen by so many people on her way to the center of Lakeville and then disappear so completely?”
    Sean Munger, who runs a true-crime website and works as a paralegal in Portland, Oregon, said by telephone: “Connie Smith lived in a time when a 10-year-old walking down country road wasn’t thought of as a dangerous situation. Society has changed today. The same creeps were around at that time but there was no Amber Alert or anything like that.”
    Nels J. Smith takes the case
    Researcher Sandy Bausch noted that she had met Connie’s brother, the tall and rugged Nels Smith, in person out West a few years ago, in an effort to dig into the case.
    “The family is still very traumatized from the experience,” she said. “Nels never really had any opportunity to talk about it while his father was aged. When his father passed, he had lots of questions on the case.”
    When Connie’s father, Peter Smith, died Feb. 22, 2012, at age 97, never learning what happened to his daughter, a baton of sorts was passed to his son, Nels J. Smith.
    Smith, of Sand Creek, South Dakota, was 13 at the time of her disappearance. Smith, now 79, spoke recently by phone about the case. Articulate and sharp-minded, Smith has since possessed a more optimistic view of the discovery of a little girl’s skeletal remains that were found in the late 1950s about 2,700 miles from the Connecticut camp in the Grand Canyon.
    A retired rancher and real-estate businessman, Smith stated in a telephone interview: “When Little Miss X’s remains were found in 1958, I called the article to my mother’s attention. She rejected the possibility that it could be Connie. (She had said) it was too far away from Connecticut, which was not really valid, but.... And the remains were described as ‘possibly American Indian.’ Connie had rather high cheek bones, which could certainly account for the latter point.”
    Dental evidence and Little Miss X
    At the time, by 1962, according to the Associated Press, the Denver sheriff, backed by evidence examined by a Colorado dental surgeon, Dr. David Berman, and a pathologist, Dr. George I. Ogura, announced that the skeletal remains were not that of Connie Smith. In the meantime, Connie’s mother died in December 1961, of a heart attack, at age 47.
    “Mother had died before someone in the Connecticut State Police caught the similarities in Connie’s dental chart and that of Little Miss X,” Nels Smith said. “Of the five points of identification on the Little Miss X dental chart, one was a filling that could have been done after Connie disappeared on July 16, 1952.”
    Smith added of Connie’s dental chart: “The remaining four points (of dental identification and not necessarily just fillings) were identical to Connie’s dental chart. Three fillings were of the same technique and material used by Dr. Floyd Ward (the Smith family dentist at the time), who examined the Little Miss X skull and jaw.” He recalled, “He said three of the four fillings were identical to his work. He speculated they could be his work and materials.”
    Smith added that one sticking point in consensus that Little Miss X was Connie was an aspect of the dental report. He said, “The last point was a small indentation in the palate, directly behind and between the two incisors.” The palate is the roof of the mouth that separates the oral and nasal cavities. He said, “Dr. Ward said it was impossible for him to determine if this indentation was naturally occurring or the result of the surgical removal of a ‘supernumerary tooth,’ which was the case with Connie.” A supernumerary tooth is an extra tooth that appears in addition to the regular number of teeth. Supernumerary teeth are typically removed if they overcrowd the rest of the teeth.
    Smith went on, “At this point the skull was examined by a pathologist in Denver in an attempt to determine whether the indentation was natural or the result of surgery. I was told that the pathologist’s opinion was that the indentation was natural. I have since learned — and I believe reliably — that it is virtually impossible to tell the difference after any surgery has completely healed and that the pathologist’s report so indicated.”
    Smith said, “That perspective on the case has stayed on my mind.” He added, “It is very strong. In my mind, I want to bring closure. It is a strong possibility that Little Miss X is Connie.”
    Hence, Smith said, aside from the fourth filling, the Little Miss X skull matched the dental record for Connie Smith. The additional filling could have been somehow gotten perhaps in the time period between Connie’s disappearance and the discovery of the Grand Canyon remains.
    “It could have been the remains, but nothing was done,” Smith claimed. “I didn’t push it at the time. Mother died in 1961.” It was thought that Helen Smith had died of a broken heart. Smith continued, “The family dentist, Floyd Ward, had said three out of the four dental fillings were his work.” He added of a similarity to Connie’s teeth: “The gap in the teeth was still there, and Mother used to joke that it was so wide, you could throw something through it.”
    Of his father’s reaction to the Little Miss X remains being discovered, Nels Smith said, “The story at the time was that it was a naturally-occurring indentation and it was decided it wasn’t Connie. He didn’t want her to be gone.”
    There was a lot of pain at that time, he said. An understandable reaction for any bereaved parent, it could have been that after so many years of searching for any living or dead traces of his daughter, that at a critical point in the case’s history, the family patriarch Peter Smith couldn’t accept tangible proof that his little girl might indeed be gone. Nels Smith stated, “I am convinced that the remains are that of Connie. My take is that he was denying the evidence and just holding out hope for Connie.”
    Dental experts weigh in
    Forensic and regular dentists were asked their opinions about the similarities between Connie’s dental records versus that of Little Miss X’s. A forensic dentist, or forensic odontologist, is a medical professional employed by a medical examiner who applies dental science in the identification of unknown human remains and bite marks. The work can involve postmortem dental examinations, digital imaging, and X-rays. None of the surveyed dentists had personally examined Little Miss X’s remains.
    When contacted by e-mail, Dr. Patrick Thevissen, a professor and head of the forensic odontology department at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (a research university in Flanders, Belgium), wrote, “In my opinion, when examining a skull, a forensic dentist would not be able to distinguish between a naturally-occurring palate indentation and one that occurred from removal of a supernumerary tooth that had fully healed from years ago.”
    Thevissen added, however, nearly-identical dental fillings do not constitute enough evidence for positive dental identification. He wrote, “Identical dental fillings work, checked with a morphological comparison of available antemortem (before death) dental X-rays, is necessary.”
    Dr. Richard Fixott, a forensic dentist in Redmond, Oregon, was asked about the comparison of Connie Smith’s dental records and that of Little Miss X. Fixott, who is also a diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Odontology, explained that if no X-ray films exist for the antemortem record, then restorative patterns on the teeth can be compared. If they match with no unexplainable discrepancies, then a records-based rather than a radiographic match can be made, he stated.
    Fixott speculated: “If I saw a small dent in the palate, I would not state that a supernumerary tooth had been extracted but would note the location if dent appeared unusual. If, as in this case, there was a record of a surgery to remove a tooth from the palate and a dent or healed site was noted in the palate, it would be an extra point of concordance but insufficient to be basis for a non-X-ray dental identification.”
    For a records-based ID, Fixott explained that unless the dental work was unusual, additional modes of identification may be used including, radiology, cranio-facial superimposition, and items found at the recovery site. Fixott stated, “When a tooth is removed there is healing over time that fills in the socket. In the case of a dent in the palate, it would not normally be diagnosed as a fully-healed extraction site on postmortem examination.” He added this would depend on location and size of the dent. He added, “However, if the dental records documented the extraction of a supernumerary tooth, finding a dent in that location would be another point of concordance with the dental record.”
    Dr. Mark Horowitz, a private-practice dentist in New York who has assisted investigations to confirm deceased patients’ identities, including victims of the World Trade Center terrorism, was also asked about the dental records question in the Little Miss X-Connie Smith connection. Horowitz stated, “Dental records and especially radiographs are used all the time for definitive identification of bodies and burn victims. I would think in this specific case of a young girl, deceased, sometime soon after removing a supernumerary tooth, there could/would certainly be evidence of the surgery. A depression or indentation could also be congenital, or naturally occurring.”
    He added, “I have no idea how common these things are. However, in such a case there would have been no reason to ever have known that such an indentation existed while the girl was living. I think that if there are records, specifically, radiographic records, of the existence and removal of a supernumerary tooth, this can certainly be compared to a skull with great accuracy, if the skull were still available.”
    On the question of whether or not a naturally-occurring palate indentation and one completely healed from dental surgery could be indistinguishable, Horowitz added, “I’m not sure I am qualified to answer that. However, I would suspect that a forensic expert, aided by certain diagnostic tools and tests, would be able to. Although, the longer the time for healing, the more difficult it might be to differentiate.”
    Nels Smith provided a DNA sample in 2004 that was entered into the FBI national database. Smith, being Connie’s brother, would have similar DNA to any possible found remains of Connie. The database periodically runs new samples across the country and compares them to those in the database to see if there are any matches.
    Finding a grave
    The stumbling point of where the remains of Little Miss X have been long-buried, since the initial discovery, may have been recently solved.
    According to Lieutenant Gerrit Boeck of the Criminal Investigation Division of the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office, they now believe they know where Little Miss X is buried. The Office’s Cold Cases & Missing Persons Department, working with the County Medical Examiner’s Office, plans to exhume the body and continue work to identify the remains, which are in an undisclosed location in Citizens Cemetery in Flagstaff, Arizona.
    “Our intention is to exhume what we think are the remains in the cemetery,” Boeck said in a telephone interview on July 20. “We are working with the records to dig up the right person.”
    A key figure in the exhumation of Little Miss X is Joe Sumner, a retired criminal investigator for the National Parks Service and a volunteer in the Sheriff’s Office’s Cold Cases Department. Sumner was on vacation in Europe for several weeks in July and could not be reached for comment.
    Boeck said Sumner and the Criminal Investigation Division had been working on the case for a long time. “They worked with old photos from newspapers and burial records, coming up with the best possible scenario and location for the unidentified body,” said Boeck of the process of narrowing down the location of Little Miss X, adding later, “What is funny with cold cases is that we end up solving other cases.”
    The “other cases” he spoke about may include the Connie Smith case, even though it was initially rejected as the girl’s body in the 1960s. This was despite the similar dental history and also prior the advent of DNA testing in criminal investigations.
    Exumation could bring clues
    The department’s oldest unsolved homicide, Little Miss X’s skeleton was found Oct. 31, 1958, on a hillside off a dirt road on Skinner Ridge south of Grand Canyon National Park, according to long-missing Coconino County coroner’s inquest as reported in a round-up article in The Arizona Daily Sun in 2013. The body was unclothed and lying prone, having been there possibly more than one year. Clothes, a comb, and a nail file case had been found near the body. After determining that the body did not belong to missing local girls or that of Connie Smith, due to a 1960s interpretation of the dental records, the remains were buried afterward in Citizen Cemetery, long a resting place for unidentified bodies. Until recently, records of Little Miss X’s burial had been lost for decades.
    “Currently we are awaiting permissions (for exhumation) from the Coconino County Medical Examiner’s office and from the State as well,” said Boeck. He walked the location of the remains with Sumner about three weeks ago. “We believe there is a good chance it is (Little Miss X). We won’t know until it is exhumed. We are not sure what we have here yet.
    “Once the exhumation is granted and performed, I’m not sure exactly what the time frame will be,” he said. “There are a lot of details to be ironed out first.”
    So, for the Connie Smith case, it appears that a piece of the long-unsolved puzzle may be finally put into place. Connie’s brother, Nels J. Smith, was recently alerted, and with his DNA sample in the FBI database, in Smith’s words: “The only thing left to do is to compare the DNAs and hope for a match.”
    The lead police investigator in the Connie Smith case, Richard Chapman, was a rookie trooper when he answered the missing person call on Indian Mountain Road. “Chappy” had been obsessed with the cold case even after retiring in 1973 (he had lamented not solving the case in a retirement speech). He died in May 2011.
    A famous mystery
    Connie Smith’s disappearance is still one of Connecticut’s most famous cases, known as B-57-H in state records. After Chapman retired, the case files were turned over to Litchfield’s Western District Major Crime Squad. The detectives who had handled the case were former Salisbury resident state trooper Mark Lauretano and Detective Karoline Keith, who are now retired.
    Detective Michael Downs of the Western District Major Crime Squad at the Western District Headquarters at 452-B Bantam Road in Litchfield is now the caretaker of the one banker’s box and three large ring binders containing about 650 pages of still-confidential files on the Connie Smith disappearance. Smith’s vanishing prompted a national search and the largest manhunt in Connecticut history.
    Downs inherited the boxes of files from the Major Crime Squad predecessors. He is not allowed to show the contents of the folders, which remain confidential because the case is still open. Active criminal police investigations’ records are at least, in part, exempt in some circumstances from Freedom of Information Act requests.
    Downs, however, was able to confirm the details of the case mentioned in this article.
    “There were some leads that were dead ends,” Downs said. “My thoughts are that it’s a good case. It all happened so long ago. In 1952 things were done differently, and technology was very old-school. If you think back to childhood, one could walk anywhere. Times change. A 10-year-old walking down an old dirt road crying would be remarkable today. Back then, it was nothing.”
    Downs said, “No one knows what actually occurred. It’s been 66 years, and no one has found her. With the Internet and technology, you would think something would have come up, but no.
    “It is a desolate, rural area with plenty of land,” he said. “There are farms with 200 acres where anything could have happened and a body could have been buried.”
    He said, “If a child were missing today, it would be found. With this case, there is hope for the family’s sake. I tend to be hopelessly optimistic that something will come.”
    Downs has been in touch with the Arizona police department on the next steps for Little Miss X’s future exhumation and matching of DNA.
    “It will be a wait-and-see kind of thing because it takes a number of weeks to get the DNA result,” said researcher Bausch on the case’s possible next steps. “I hope there will be closure for the Smith family or another family should the results turn out to not match Connie.” She added later: “It sounds promising.”
    Salisbury town historian Jean McMillen detailed a portion of one of the Revolutionary War-era gravestones’ worn inscriptions near where Connie was last seen. The verses seemed right for the location.
    McMillen speculated that the now-barely-legible lines on the markers may describe even during the superior power of Mother Nature over mankind, the soul of man is not destroyed, but is transcended to Heaven.
    “….Could love’s command have delayed his fleeting breath,
    Or friendship stayed the bold arrest of death;
    He yet would live to bless the happy few,
    Who all his worths and merits knew.
    But gentle reader make a moment’s pause,
    And see nature’s bloom disrobed by nature’s cause;
    Think how precious every human joy,
    Death’s but releasing what it can’t destroy.”

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