Barbie left on grave could solve 6-year-old's murder

WEST JORDAN, Utah (KTRK) -- Who left the Barbie doll on Rosie Tapia's grave? The Utah Cold Case Coalition believes it could be her killer.

Tapia was only 6 years old when someone removed the screen from her family's ground-floor and kidnapped her while she was sleeping on Aug. 13, 1995.

She was raped and murdered before her body was found in a canal off the Jordan River, not far from her family's apartment.

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Shortly after Tapia was buried at the Salt Lake City Cemetery, someone left a Barbie doll on her grave and her family has kept it in their possession since that time.

Members of the Utah Cold Case Coalition, a nonprofit organization, said recently, two possible people of interest in the case have been identified who had some fixation with Barbies. They have arranged for DNA to be gathered from the doll as part of their efforts to help solve the murder.

Coalition members say DNA analysis is expensive for the nonprofit, and are asking for the public's help.

"If somebody will come forward and say, 'I know who left that there,' or, 'I left that there,' then we may be able to confirm that; that might save those resources," said Karra Porter, co-founder of Utah Cold Case Coalition.

The coalition plans to wait at least four to six weeks to move forward with the analysis.
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