The remains of a woman found in Simpson County in 2001 have been identified by authorities.

Kentucky State Police said investigators have been able to confirm the identity of Dawn Clare Plonsky Wilkerson of Nashville.

KSP’s investigation began with the discovery of decomposed remains Oct. 9, 2001, at the 12-mile marker of Interstate 65 in Simpson County.

At the time, the remains were unknown and no leads were available.

Subsequent investigation and the assistance of the DNA Doe Project enabled police to confirm the victim’s identity as 45-year-old Wilkerson.

The DNA Doe Project was founded in 2017 as a nonprofit organization that uses genetic genealogy to identify remains, using volunteer experts to help identify John and Jane Does and raising funds to cover the lab costs of extracting and sequencing DNA from remains when law enforcement agencies are unable to afford it.

The investigation is ongoing and anyone with information can contact KSP at 270-782-2010.

– Follow courts reporter Justin Story on Twitter @jstorydailynews or visit