Funding goal met in 2002 Brighton Baby John Doe cold case

Published on January 28, 2022

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The Weld County Sheriff's Office announced Friday morning it had met the $5,000 goal required to conduct forensic genealogy testing in the 2002 Brighton Baby John Doe cold case.

Othram Inc. can now begin the next phase of the forensic genealogy process to hopefully answer some questions in this almost 20-year-old cold case.

Founded in 2018 in The Woodlands, Texas, Othram is the world’s first private DNA laboratory built specifically to apply the power of modern parallel sequencing to forensic evidence, according to the company’s website. The Weld County Sheriff's Office announced in December it had partnered with Othram on the Baby John Doe cold case.

Baby John Doe was found deceased in September 2002 outside of L&M Auto Repair in Brighton. Employees were just arriving at work that morning when a staff member spotted something under a bush.

The newborn had been wrapped in a blue blanket with the words “Skate Bear” and a corresponding graphic. There were no other clues left at the scene indicating anything about the newborn or the circumstances of his death.

Investigators described the baby as having dark hair. Ancestry was estimated to be potentially white, Latino and/or Italian. The newborn weighed about 7 pounds and was 21 inches long at his time of death.

Pathologists determined the infant had been born healthy between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. the prior evening, but they were unable to definitively establish a cause of death. Investigators pursued all available investigative leads and tips at the time but were unable to identify Baby John Doe and the case went cold.

Anyone with information about Baby John Doe is encouraged to contact Cold Case Det. Byron Kastilahn at (970) 356-4015. Reference case number WC02-4535. The case also is logged in NamUs as UP10386.