Rosie Tapia was 6 years old when she was kidnapped from her Salt Lake City apartment and sexually assaulted in August 1995. Her body was discovered several hours later in a canal off the Jordan River, according to FOX13.
After her death, Rosie's mother Lewine Tapia said there were a few items left on her gravesite, including a Barbie doll.
"So I just gathered them up and took them home," Tapia told FOX13.
On Thursday -- the day that Rosie would have turned 30 -- the Utah Cold Case Coalition held a press conference to share the news that the doll left at the gravesite may, in fact, be a valuable clue.
Representatives from the group said that two possible persons of interest have been identified who had some fixation with Barbies.
"It’s a Sweetheart Barbie that was manufactured in 1994," private investigator Jason Jensen told reporters.
Francine Bardole, a senior crime scene technician for the West Jordan Police Department, said that a new cutting edge DNA extraction method will be used on the doll to try to identify who it came from.
"In this buffer solution are the skin cells from those who have touched the evidence," she said.
The group plans to wait at least four to six weeks to move forward with the analysis, according to FOX13.
Since additional DNA analysis is expensive for the nonprofit organization, group members are asking the public for any information that could lead to a break in the case.
"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," Karra Porter, co-founder of Utah Cold Case Coalition, told reporters.
Tapia said she's not putting too much hope into this new possible lead, but would welcome any answers as to who may have done this to her daughter.
"I’m hoping the Lord will let me live until we find the person who took my daughter," she said.
Anyone who may have information on the case is urged to contact the Utah Cold Case Coalition at 385-258-3313.