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DNA helps identify eighth victim Of serial killer

The eighth victim of the Molalla Forest Murderer, unidentified until now, was positively identified through DNA analysis as an 18-year-old woman, Tawnia Jarie Johnston.

Johnston’s remains were among those of seven women found at a Molalla dump site in the 1980s. Her body was found in 1987, but her identity was not confirmed until this week.

The young woman is believed to be one of the victims of Dayton Leroy Rogers, who was convicted in 1988 and 1989 for the murders of Jennifer Lisa Smith, Lisa Marie Mack, Maureen Ann Hodges, Christine Lotus Adams, Cynthia Devore, Nondace Cervantes and Riatha Gyles.

Smith's body was found in a Clackamas parking lot. The others, including Johnson, were found in the dump.

The sheriff’s office gave few details about Johnston, except to say she arrived in the Portland area in the spring of 1987.

Rogers, now 60, remains behind bars at the Oregon State Penitentiary. Rogers has been convicted of six of the killings, and his case has been in the courts for years.

Most recently, the state Supreme Court vacated the death sentence a jury handed down in 2006, saying the judge had made errors.




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