Skeletons in Stockton

August 19, 2010
Hosted by Francie Koehler, CPI, CCDI

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Episode Description

It was reported that Elizabeth Fern Rathjen walked away from Stockton State Mental Hospital in 1956. But did she? Mass graves were found with at least 40 intact human skeletons. Is one of the skeletons Elizabeth? Her daughter Joyce Tafoya thinks so. Tammy Davidson, the licensed private investigator Joyce hired to locate her mother, thinks it is a good possibility. Joyce ran into obstacles at every turn. She finally was granted an injunction to keep the skeletons from just being reburied when unearthed by a construction company working on the old hospital site and to get them examined for time of death, sex and height. Will Joyce be successful in getting DNA tested on the two skeletons that are potential matches? The State of California Department of Health has refused. What do Joyce and Tammy do now?

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Francie Koehler, CPI, CCDI

Francie Koehler, CPI, CCDI

Francie Koehler’s career as a licensed private investigator includes cases that have sparked media projects. "Unsolved Mysteries" portrayed one of her missing person cases. British author Val McDermid featured her capital case in "A Suitable Job for A Woman" and true crime writer Ann Rule chronicled a case she investigated involving a missing nightclub owner entitled "In The Name Of Love." Francie drew on her investigative and retail experience to create the 3-part video, "Loss Prevention - The Big Picture." International results included an invitation to Moscow, where she spoke to Russian nationals interested in privatization. Francie is the former two-term president of both the National Council of Investigation & Security Services (NCISS) and the California Association of Licensed Investigators (CALI). Awarded by each organization for her work, she serves as Legislative Chair for both and regularly testifies before the California State Legislature regarding bills of concern to PI’s. Francie has been recognized by her state regulatory agency for outstanding service to her profession. In addition, she holds memberships in the Council for International Investigators, National Association of Legal Investigators, World Association of Detectives, and California Attorneys for Criminal Justice. Francie also works with the Innocence Project and holds certifications as a Conflict Mediator, Legal Investigator, Professional Investigator and Criminal Defense Investigator.

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