The investigation into a nearly 40-year-old missing Kansas City woman continues

KANSAS CITY, Missouri — After nearly 40 years, advances in a missing person case from Kansas City, Missouri, and questions about human remains found in Clay County have collided.

The Kansas City Police Department and the Clay County Sheriff’s Office are now trying to determine how Gwendolyn Robinson died and who killed her.

Robinson disappeared in 1983, almost 40 years ago.

“I’m asking for the community’s help,” said daughter Deoina Mitchell.

She was only 2 years old when she last saw her mother.

“I’ve spent my entire life looking for my mother, wondering where she was, what happened to her,” Mitchell said.

She recently received some of these replies.

That summer, Mitchell went to KCPD to restart her mother’s missing persons case, which had gone cold.

At that point, KCPD analyst Darin saw Lee Robinson’s image and recalled a composite he saw five years earlier. The composite was created from a 3D scan of a skull found in rural Clay County.

“I thought it was a very close resemblance,” Lee said. “That’s when we decided to go down that route to see if that’s the case.”

Robinson’s DNA and the remains matched.

The Clay County Sheriff’s Office found the human remains nearly 40 years ago.

Since then, contingency detectives have followed about 300 investigative leads and guided them to missing persons cases across the country, according to Investigation Sgt. Chris Johnson.

“The remains of Chicago, Florida, Missouri and serial murders from Overland Park, Kansas were believed to be missing,” Johnson said.

At one point they had information that the remains belonged to an 18-22 year old white woman. Further testing showed that it was indeed a 17-23 year old black woman. In 2016, they released a new composite that helped Lee make the connection.

“I hope this will bring new faith to people who are still out there, victims and families who are still out there,” said Clay County public media relations manager Sarah Boyd. “Sometimes these cases are solved in a day and sometimes these cases take years to come and we’re waiting for that missing link, that missing piece of evidence, to come up.”

“Never give up,” Mitchell said. “If you’re told no, keep going until you have the answers you need.”

Johnson said this opens a big box of new leads and new interlocutors. I have to put her life together.”

He hopes this tremendous development will help them catch Robinson’s killer.

KCPD and the Clay County Sheriff’s Office are now merging their case files to solve Robinson’s murder and give Mitchell some peace.

You’ve already discovered something ironic. Robinson’s remains were found on her birthday, 21 years after her birth.

The Clay County Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone with information about Robinson’s murder to come forward. Contact Sergeant Johnson at 816-407-3723. You can also remain anonymous here. The investigation into a nearly 40-year-old missing Kansas City woman continues

Sarah Y. Kim

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