Angel Baby Doe: An 18 Year Mystery

Angel Baby Doe was the moniker given to 18 year old Angel McAllister, who was found brutally murdered via a shotgun blast to the face on October 8, 1999 in Arizona. She was a pretty and street-smart girl who fell victim to a still unidentified killer after being released from foster care just a few months prior. 

Angel’s sister Chastity Pinedo described her as “spunky, she was beautiful. She was just amazing all around. We all had our issues from the things that happened in our childhood, and we all had to make it through that. But she was the strong one that held us together.”

Angel and her sisters had been tragically separated by the foster care system. After turning 18, Angel left the California orphanage she was assigned to in order to return home and find them. Sadly, she did not make it, and for 18 years, her sisters were puzzled as to what had happened to Angel. Detectives took until 2017 to identify Angel and notify her family after using DNA analysis software.

Now here comes the ironic part: detectives initially nicknamed her “Angel Baby Doe” for a tattoo on her right ankle. The police captain on the scene had said that “the unfinished angel baby tattoo looked like it was kind of a homemade deal. It did not appear to be a professional tattoo so [her] family may not even know about that.”

Bizarrely, her identity had been on her body the whole time, but investigators had had no way of knowing. One can’t help but think of the dreamy 1960 tune Angel Baby by Rosie and the Originals, and wonder if it was ever a favourite song of Angel’s or if it doubly inspired her tattoo.

Angel was also wearing two good-luck necklaces at the time of her death. One was of a half-moon and stars:

The other was a copper pendant with the image of the Madonna and Child, and contained the words “Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, pray for us.”

Angel’s killer has never been captured. It’s disturbing to think that the cold blooded person who shot this poor girl in the face is still probably walking the streets somewhere, while she rests in a solitary grave in Yuma, Arizona. The only consolation is that Angel Baby now has her name back. Strangely enough, her identity had been with her all along.

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