Missing in Utah: Who is Millard County’s Jane Doe?

Missing In Utah

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Utah) – Millard County’s “Jane Doe” has been a mystery for more four decades.

But her identity is now known.

It began in August 1979, when Leonard Watts was waiting for a friend. They were going to cut wood.
Watts was at Cove Fort in Millard County along with his family.

While waiting, he noticed a rat’s nest and poked at it.

“I run into this body, and what I thought was a body,” Watts said. “I went to get my wife and she confirmed what I thought.”

He called authorities in Millard County and told them what he had found.

“Basically (it was) just a skeleton,” he recalled. “It had a few limbs or stuff, debris thrown over it. Nothing real serious you know.”

But he did notice the lack of clothing on the skeleton.

“The only thing I’d seen was, (it) looked like a home-made bra and she had a watch on,” Watts said.

When Millard County authorities arrived, they noticed a Texas Instrument watch and it was still ticking. For detectives, it mean she hadn’t been there very long.

“It was apparent that she had no teeth at all and there was no dentures that were discovered at the scene,” said then Sheriff Ed Phillips.

In 1979, It was Sheriff Phillips who oversaw the case of the body. He said his deputies returned with a metal detector hoping to find anything related to a cause of death.

“(We found) at least one slug that was later identified as a .25 caliber,” he said.
“One of the unique things about it was it didn’t have a lot of markings on it. What they call the lands and grooves on it.

Soon word spread of the female body found near Cove Fort.

In newspaper reports at the time one article said the autopsy showed “no signs of violence.” Another reported authorities also found a “ring with a green stone” and sheriff Phillips said “no persons from his county match the description of the victim.”

It remained unsolved and years later a composite of the woman named “Jane Doe” was released by the Millard County Sheriff’s Office. Still, there was no information about who she was.

In 2019, the Utah Cold Case Coalition produced a podcast called “Cold Case Talk.”
In the episode titled “Toothless Jane Doe body found” the first mention was made about who this woman could be.

“We posted an item on our Utah Cold Case Coalition’s Facebook page (about Jane Doe,” said co-host Karra Porter on the podcast.

Porter is an attorney and co-founder of the coalition.

“And very quickly thereafter we got some information on our Facebook page,” Porter continued.

The post was from one of their volunteers in Millard County. Angela Willoughby was a paralegal and provided the coalition with a possible name. Willoughby joined the coalition during the Jane Doe podcast. She said the coalition’s inquiry about Jane Doe caused her to look at cases in Utah. She went onto the state’s BCI website for missing persons and found one person that piqued her interest.

“I knew she went missing in 1979,” Willoughby said on the podcast. “I searched in 1979 and the first one that popped up was ….”

“Sandra Matott,” Porter jumped in.

Willoughby agreed and said she was the person that could possibly be the Jane Doe. On their website, Salt Lake City police has a listing for Sandra Matoot who disappeared in 1979 and was last seen wearing a white top, green slacks, white bra, and checkered underwear.

Friday, the connection between the two persons inches closer to a confirmation.

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