Distinctive jacket holds clues
JUDITH Furlong is no longer so sure what happened to her murdered daughter Jane.
She had a ‘‘very strong idea’’ of who might have been involved when Jane disappeared in 1993 and her feelings didn’t change when the 17-year-old’s remains were found on Sunset Beach, Port Waikato, in June last year. But now things are different. ‘‘It might have changed, just from what the police have said to me,’’ she says.
Judith remains hopeful the mystery of what happened to her daughter all those years ago will be solved despite a full year of investigation passing since the discovery of the former prostitute’s remains.
‘‘The police are a lot better than they were 20 years ago,’’ she says.
‘‘They’re pretty dedicated. I hope for their sake something comes out of it because there has been a lot of work put into it.’’
Last month police searched Jane Furlong’s former home in Heretaunga Ave, Onehunga, for the second time.
She shared the flat with her then boyfriend Danny Norsworthy.
Investigators are now asking for information about a distinctive tasselled leather jacket Jane owned around the time she went missing.
‘‘Jane purchased the jacket from a shop in Onehunga shortly before her disappearance and it was an item of clothing that she was commonly seen in,’’ Detective Inspector Mark Benefield says.
Her mother believes it may have been what she was wearing when she went missing and it was not found with her body.
Mr Benefield says the jacket is a patchwork of leather panels of varying shades of brown or tan.
It also has tassels on each arm and possibly on the back.
‘‘In 1993 these were popular items that were passed around and traded, and we appeal to anyone who may know where this jacket is, or has information about what happened to the jacket, to come forward and speak with the inquiry team,’’ Mr Benefield says.
Police would also like more information about a light coloured Morris van that was connected to Karangahape Rd and the Port Waikato area at the time Jane went missing.
Last month Mr Benefield said: ‘‘I’m hopeful that someone who lived or worked in those areas may remember the van.
‘‘I believe there are several people who know what happened and some of them are probably feeling a little nervous.’’
A $50,000 reward for information about those responsible for Jane’s death is on offer until September.