Santa Clara County DA hopes quilt helps solve cold case

Santa Clara County authorities are trying to identify the maker or owner of a quilt that was found on the body of a woman who was strangled in 1989.
February 6, 2014 7:04:41 PM PST
Prosecutors are hoping to solve a cold-case murder by asking the public to help identify a patchwork quilt that was used to cover the body of a San Jose woman found strangled inside her car at an airport parking lot 25 years ago.

On March 8, 1989, Cathy Zimmer, a 38-year-old mother of two, drove her children to school, had lunch with a friend and attended two classes at San Jose State University, but then missed an optometry appointment, according to the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office.

Two days later, San Jose police located her Chrysler New Yorker in the short-term parking lot at the San Jose airport and found her body in the backseat wrapped in the quilt, Deputy District Attorney Ted Kajani said.

According to Kajani, Zimmer's family said they did not recognize the quilt, but have never given up in their quest to find out who murdered her.

The district attorney's cold case unit on Thursday released a photo of the quilt in an effort to find out who may have made it or owned it -- information that could lead to the identity of her killer.

The quilt has an orange border and is filled with brightly colored patches, many with floral designs.

"And when people look at it, we're hoping they think of it more than just the quilt itself," Kajani said. "Take a look at all the panels, see if you recognize maybe a set of curtains it was made from, some of the material, or a pair of funky pants or something."

Anyone with information about the blanket or Zimmer's death is urged to call investigator Michael Brown of the district attorney's office at (408) 808-3760.

(ABC7 News contributed to this report)


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