L.A. Pair Say They Know Mystery Woman Found in Croatia

Two Los Angeles residents believe they have solved the mystery of Croatia’s Jane Doe—a woman found wrapped in a sheet on a rocky island who spoke perfect English but did not know her own name.Nina Smidt told The Daily Beast that the scratched-up woman pictured in photos that flashed around the globe this week worked…

Powered by NewsAPI , in Liberal Perspective on .

news image

Two Los Angeles residents believe they have solved the mystery of Croatia’s Jane Doe—a woman found wrapped in a sheet on a rocky island who spoke perfect English but did not know her own name.

Nina Smidt told The Daily Beast that the scratched-up woman pictured in photos that flashed around the globe this week worked as an artisan at a company where she was a manager in 2015. She had been placed there by a non-profit that helps the homeless, Smidt said.

The company was operating out of a warehouse known as Second Space in downtown Los Angeles, and landlord Tyler Madsen allowed the woman to live there rent-free so she could save up money to move to Ireland and get off Skid Row.

She was a really good worker, smart, and she has a wonderful heart.

“I recognized the woman in the photo immediately,” Smidt told The Daily Beast on Tuesday evening. “The second I saw her picture, I sent it to Tyler to confirm that it was her, which he confirmed.”

Madsen told The Daily Beast he is certain the woman was his former tenant, whom he had not seen since she left for Ireland in July 2015.

“One hundred percent—there is no doubt in my mind it’s her,” he said.

Smidt said when she saw the photo on Monday, she called police in Croatia, who then contacted the embassy in Slovakia, where the woman is from and has family. She said that on Tuesday, police reported back to her that the embassy confirmed the woman’s identity with relatives.

The Daily Beast is not making the name public because Croatian and Slovakian officials could not be immediately reached for confirmation. But the photo circulated by police of the woman matches photos of the woman that Smidt and Madsen knew and remember fondly.

“[She] had run into hard times and bad luck. But she was a really good worker, smart, and she has a wonderful heart,” Smidt said.

“Tyler and I are concerned about her well-being and are hopeful that now that her identity has been confirmed by the embassy, her family will be able to help find out what happened to her.”

Madsen, the owner of the warehouse where the Jane Doe was living and working in, added: “Our interactions were always good. She was a hard worker and was always trying to save up money. I think it was Ireland she was trying to go to and she had friends over there and was really determined to save up and get to her people.”

The woman was spotted in Krk, Croatia, on Sept. 12 by a married couple who were fishing.

“We saw her nervously walking up and down and when she saw us, she started yelling and waving,” the husband told Sata24. “We approached the shore to see what was going on. She was covered with a white sheet, but it may be that she found a tarpaulin or something and tried to keep warm with it.”

The couple called for help, and a rescue team had to use off-road vehicles and hike more than two miles to get to the woman.

A Croatian police official told The Daily Beast that earlier this week they suspected the woman could be Eastern European based on the clothing she was wearing, but she spoke English with a “Queen’s English” accent.

While the question of the woman’s identity may have been answered, officials still do not know why or how she ended up in Krk—or how she survived in an area teeming with animal predators.

She was severely dehydrated and emaciated and had bloody scabs from deep scratches on her face, but she did not have cuts on her feet as would be expected on someone who came to the island over the rocky shoreline.

Read More