Friday, September 19, 2008

ARTICLE #102) ‘In my heart of hearts I don’t believe it’s Jessie’

Wednesday, January 23, 2008
‘In my heart of hearts I don’t believe it’s Jessie’ The Kamloops Daily News by Catherine Litt

It has been a busy couple of days for Kamloops mother Glendene Grant.

Her telephone has been ringing steadily with calls from radio, newspaper and TV reporters from across Canada, all seeking the latest information about her missing daughter, Jessie Foster.

“That was just CBC on the phone,” said Grant, pausing Tuesday to check an incoming call.

“It’s been non-stop.”

There has been renewed interest in her story ever since news came this week about a possible break in her daughter’s missing person case – that a body found in Texas shortly after Jessie disappeared could in fact be hers.

“In my heart of hearts I don’t believe it’s Jessie,” said Grant, whose 21-year-old daughter was last seen in Las Vegas in the spring of 2006.

But police say there are similarities between Jessie’s case and the body of an unidentified young woman found badly burned alongside a highway in Kilgore, Texas, about seven months after Jessie disappeared.

And they want to collect DNA samples from Grant and Jessie’s biological father to see if the DNA matches what was collected from the body.

“There are some similarities in the vital statistics of each one of these girls,” said Lt. Mike Claxton of the Gregg County Sheriff’s department. “…and some slight similarities in distinction characteristics that we’re looking at to see if we can match the identity of Miss Foster with the unidentified white female.”

The unidentified body, said Claxton, belongs to a Caucasian female of similar age, height and hair colour to Foster, which is enough of a connection for police to seek DNA confirmation.

For Grant, who has been through this before when police found two bodies in the Nevada desert a year ago, the anxiety is all too familiar, although she says she is coping better this time around.

“Panicking and crying and worrying is not helping us,” she said.

So Grant said she is trying to maintain a sense of calm until she gets confirmation about the body in Texas.

She said she won’t mourn her daughter until she knows for sure she is dead, which she doesn’t believe is the case.

Instead, Grant believes her daughter is trapped in a sex trafficking operation and is alive somewhere. Investigators told her they suspect Jessie was possibly involved in sex trafficking before she disappeared from Las Vegas.

In the meantime, she continues to field calls from the media, waiting and hoping that one day the attention paid to her story will lead her to her daughter’s discovery.

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