Cherokee County Investigators Identify Woman Murdered In 1988
TAHLEQUAH, Oklahoma - The Cherokee County Sheriff's Office and the Oklahoma State Medical Examiner's Office have identified a murder victim whose body was found in the Neosho River in May 1988.
They learned the victim's identity while preparing for a cold case presentation, according to Undersheriff Jason Chennault of the CCSO.
Until now, the woman had been known only as "Daisy Doe"- because of a daisy tattoo on her shoulder.
Authorities say Jeanette Ellen Coleman was 31 when she was killed. Her body was found floating below the Ft. Gibson Lake dam, a concrete block tied around her waist.
Investigators were reviewing the physical evidence in her murder to make a cold case presentation when the ME's office realized her hands had been removed and were still in storage.
Chennault said that's not something that was commonly done.
"It turned out to be a good thing that they did," he said.
They used technology that was not available in 1988 to identify her through her fingerprints. Learning her identity raises more questions about who killed her and why.
Coleman's fingerprints were on file due to an arrest in Muskogee County in 1979. Chennault said she was arrested in connection to the murder of Muskogee resident John Seward, but no charges were brought against her.
Instead, her ex-husband was put to death for the crime.
"Her ex-husband was serial killer Charles Troy Coleman," Chennault said. The undersheriff says Coleman is not suspected of physically causing "Daisy Doe's" death.
"He couldn't have done it physically," he said. "He could have had someone do it, but he was in prison from 1979 to his execution in 1990."
Though the murder took place 27 years ago, Chennault hopes identifying the victim may bring someone forward who knows something about her.
The investigation into Jeanette Ellen Coleman's murder continues, Chennault. Anyone with information about her death is asked to call Chennault at 918-456-2583 or OSBI Special Agent Vicky Lyons at 918-456-0653.