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Jamie left her residence in the vicinity of the 5300 block of northeast 58th Street in Vancouver, Washington on the morning of December 7, 1971, and went to Fort Vancouver High School, about two miles from her home. It is established that she arrived at school. She had only two classes that day, and she did attend them. She told her foster mother she would walk home from school and would arrive at 1:00 or 1:30 p.m., but she did not appear as scheduled. She has never been heard from again. Jamie's purse, identification, and other possessions were found in May 1972, five months after her disappearance, in a wooded area alongside a road in the Dole Valley area of Northern Clark County, northeast of Vancouver.
Authorities initially believed Jamie had run away from home, and as a result, she was not officially declared a missing person until January 1972. Her loved ones never thought she left of her own volition. She and her sister had been wards of the state since they were toddlers. Their father was in prison and they had been taken from their mother. Jamie was a good student, got along well with her foster mother and was close to her sister in 1971; she was also a talented artist and writer, and a member of the 4-H Club. She had a savings account at the time of her disappearance, but the account has not been used since she went missing.
Police eventually decided Jamie had probably not run away; she is now believed to be the first victim of a suspected serial killer, Warren Leslie Forrest, who is thought to have raped and killed at least six young women in the Vancouver area. He was convicted of murdering one nineteen-year-old woman in 1978 and received a life sentence. He attended the same high school Jamie had, albeit several years before she did, and was popular and a good student. It's possible he and Jamie knew each other slightly. Forrest is still incarcerated, but will be eligible for parole in 2014. The bodies of three other women have been recovered in rural Clark County, two of them within a mile of where Jamie's possessions were found. One of them remains identified.
Clark County Sheriff's Office