"Princess Doe" is identified Friday as Dawn Olanick, a 17-year-old...

"Princess Doe" is identified Friday as Dawn Olanick, a 17-year-old from Long Island, during a news conference 40 years to the day since her body was discovered in a New Jersey cemetery. Credit: lehighvalleylive.com/Steve Novak

The case of “Princess Doe,” a teenager whose brutally beaten body was found 40 years ago in a cemetery in New Jersey but was never identified, has finally been solved — and the victim is a Long Islander who was killed by a man after she moved out of her family home, officials said Friday.

Dawn Olanick, a Connetquot High School student who was 17 when she disappeared in July 1982, was identified through DNA testing as the victim of an attack in Blairstown, New Jersey, said James Pfeiffer, the Warren County prosecutor.

At the same time, officials identified and charged her alleged killer: Arthur Kinlaw, 68, who is already serving a sentence for the murders of two other Long Island women and who authorities have identified as a pimp. On Friday, he was charged with one count of murder in connection with Olanick's death.

Kinlaw had written to authorities from prison in 2005 confessing to the murder of the girl found in the Cedar Ridge Cemetery, but police could never charge him because the body had not been identified, court papers said.

Instead, it lay buried in the cemetery under a tombstone placed there by local residents that said: “Princess Doe, Missing From Home, Dead Among Strangers, Remembered By All, Born ?, Found July 15, 1982.”

The locals arranged for the burial and held annual memorials for the unidentified girl.

Advanced DNA and genealogy technology finally allowed authorities to identify the body as Olanick’s, Pfeiffer said.

“DNA technology and genetic genealogy basically make the impossible possible in this case for us,” he said. “Without technology we would have never been able to identify her and solve this crime.”

Her relatives, after not knowing for four decades what happened to her, were overwhelmed by the news, Pfeiffer said in an interview.

“The family, after someone’s missing for 40 years, it’s just a sense of loss,” he said. “They never gave up hope. On the other hand, it’s almost an insurmountable challenge to try to find somebody.”

“They’re extremely happy and relieved,” he added. The relatives attended a news conference Friday in New Jersey and went to her burial site, but are not ready to speak to the media, he said.

“It was a really emotionally charged day for them,” he said. “It’s pretty rough on the family.”

Olanick had moved out of her family’s home after finishing her junior year at Connetquot, and shortly after that went missing, Pfeiffer said.

“She was only out of the family home a very short period of time before she ended up encountering Mr. Kinlaw,” he said.

Authorities believe she was staying in West Babylon, and was probably picked up somewhere in the area: Bay Shore, Brentwood, Islip, Amityville, Bohemia, Bellport were some of the areas where Kinlaw operated trying to recruit teenagers or young people to become sex workers, Pfeiffer said.

“He was attempting to coerce her into becoming a prostitute … and she was not interested in that, and as a result of that he killed her,” he said. “He would look for young women in those various towns and approach them and see whether or not they would be interested in being involved in prostitution.”

Though Olanick refused Kinlaw’s pressure, she and another person referred to as Witness #1 in court papers drove with Kinlaw to New Jersey. There, at the cemetery, he smashed her head several times with what may have been a baseball bat, Pfeiffer said.

She died of blunt trauma to the face and head with multiple fractures, authorities said. “Her face was beaten so badly it made recognition impossible,” according to court papers.

Olanick was wearing a red and white print skirt and a red pullover short sleeve shirt at the time she was killed, the papers said. Police still have the clothing.

A cemetery worker found her body on July 15, 1982, in a heavily wooded area of the burial grounds, according to the papers. Her body was identified exactly 40 years later.

About a year after her body was found, “Princess Doe” became the first unidentified person case entered into the NCIC (National Crime Information Center) computer database by FBI Director William H. Webster.

Authorities exhumed her body in 1999 to obtain DNA samples, but did not succeed in identifying her. Her body was reburied.

The breakthrough in the case four decades after the killing came when companies including Astrea Forensics of California and Innovative Forensics of Virginia were able to assemble DNA and genealogy data that identified the victim possibly as Olanick.

Authorities went to Long Island to contact some of her relatives and obtain DNA samples that confirmed it, officials said. The companies can use large public databases of DNA such as 23 and Me and Ancestry.com in their work, Pfeiffer said.

Kinlaw is currently serving prison sentences for two others murders on Long Island. He was recently up for parole, which was rejected, but even if it is granted, he will be remanded to Warren County for the alleged murder of Olanick, Pfeiffer said.

The case of “Princess Doe,” a teenager whose brutally beaten body was found 40 years ago in a cemetery in New Jersey but was never identified, has finally been solved — and the victim is a Long Islander who was killed by a man after she moved out of her family home, officials said Friday.

Dawn Olanick, a Connetquot High School student who was 17 when she disappeared in July 1982, was identified through DNA testing as the victim of an attack in Blairstown, New Jersey, said James Pfeiffer, the Warren County prosecutor.

At the same time, officials identified and charged her alleged killer: Arthur Kinlaw, 68, who is already serving a sentence for the murders of two other Long Island women and who authorities have identified as a pimp. On Friday, he was charged with one count of murder in connection with Olanick's death.

A picture showing Arthur Kinlaw that ran with a Newsday...

A picture showing Arthur Kinlaw that ran with a Newsday article on Oct. 10, 1999 Credit: Newsday

Kinlaw had written to authorities from prison in 2005 confessing to the murder of the girl found in the Cedar Ridge Cemetery, but police could never charge him because the body had not been identified, court papers said.

Instead, it lay buried in the cemetery under a tombstone placed there by local residents that said: “Princess Doe, Missing From Home, Dead Among Strangers, Remembered By All, Born ?, Found July 15, 1982.”

The locals arranged for the burial and held annual memorials for the unidentified girl.

Advanced DNA and genealogy technology finally allowed authorities to identify the body as Olanick’s, Pfeiffer said.

“DNA technology and genetic genealogy basically make the impossible possible in this case for us,” he said. “Without technology we would have never been able to identify her and solve this crime.”

Her relatives, after not knowing for four decades what happened to her, were overwhelmed by the news, Pfeiffer said in an interview.

“The family, after someone’s missing for 40 years, it’s just a sense of loss,” he said. “They never gave up hope. On the other hand, it’s almost an insurmountable challenge to try to find somebody.”

“They’re extremely happy and relieved,” he added. The relatives attended a news conference Friday in New Jersey and went to her burial site, but are not ready to speak to the media, he said.

“It was a really emotionally charged day for them,” he said. “It’s pretty rough on the family.”

Olanick had moved out of her family’s home after finishing her junior year at Connetquot, and shortly after that went missing, Pfeiffer said.

“She was only out of the family home a very short period of time before she ended up encountering Mr. Kinlaw,” he said.

Authorities believe she was staying in West Babylon, and was probably picked up somewhere in the area: Bay Shore, Brentwood, Islip, Amityville, Bohemia, Bellport were some of the areas where Kinlaw operated trying to recruit teenagers or young people to become sex workers, Pfeiffer said.

“He was attempting to coerce her into becoming a prostitute … and she was not interested in that, and as a result of that he killed her,” he said. “He would look for young women in those various towns and approach them and see whether or not they would be interested in being involved in prostitution.”

Though Olanick refused Kinlaw’s pressure, she and another person referred to as Witness #1 in court papers drove with Kinlaw to New Jersey. There, at the cemetery, he smashed her head several times with what may have been a baseball bat, Pfeiffer said.

Howard Mott reaches for "Princess Doe's" gravestone during a memorial service...

Howard Mott reaches for "Princess Doe's" gravestone during a memorial service at Cedar Ridge Cemetery in Blairstown, N.J., on July 15, 2007.  Credit: AP/Claudio Papapietro

She died of blunt trauma to the face and head with multiple fractures, authorities said. “Her face was beaten so badly it made recognition impossible,” according to court papers.

Olanick was wearing a red and white print skirt and a red pullover short sleeve shirt at the time she was killed, the papers said. Police still have the clothing.

A cemetery worker found her body on July 15, 1982, in a heavily wooded area of the burial grounds, according to the papers. Her body was identified exactly 40 years later.

About a year after her body was found, “Princess Doe” became the first unidentified person case entered into the NCIC (National Crime Information Center) computer database by FBI Director William H. Webster.

Authorities exhumed her body in 1999 to obtain DNA samples, but did not succeed in identifying her. Her body was reburied.

The breakthrough in the case four decades after the killing came when companies including Astrea Forensics of California and Innovative Forensics of Virginia were able to assemble DNA and genealogy data that identified the victim possibly as Olanick.

Fresh flowers and mementos decorate the gravesite of "Princess Doe"...

Fresh flowers and mementos decorate the gravesite of "Princess Doe" in Blairstown, New Jersey, on July 15, 2022, the 40th anniversary of the discovery of her beaten body in the woods at the edge of Cedar Ridge Cemetery. Credit: lehighvalleylive.com/Steve Novak

Authorities went to Long Island to contact some of her relatives and obtain DNA samples that confirmed it, officials said. The companies can use large public databases of DNA such as 23 and Me and Ancestry.com in their work, Pfeiffer said.

Kinlaw is currently serving prison sentences for two others murders on Long Island. He was recently up for parole, which was rejected, but even if it is granted, he will be remanded to Warren County for the alleged murder of Olanick, Pfeiffer said.

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