SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Each year, the Medical Examiner's office looks into the deaths of hundreds of people who can't be readily identified.
It can be very challenging to figure out who these "John and Jane Does" really are. But there is one local woman whose talents help the unknowns "come alive."
Her name is PJ Puterbaugh and she is a North County-based painter, sketch artist and sculptor. She's using her love of art to help solve some of the county's biggest mysteries. And she does it for free, as an advocate for the many who are unidentified, but never lost.
Puterbaugh says she can't put a dollar amount on what she does. She says it's something that gives her more meaning that any check could ever do. Simply put, it's just a labor of love for her.
News 8's Phil Blauer shares her fascinating story in the above video, and follows her in the county morgue and at her home studio to see her incredible skill, as she tries to put a face on crime in this News 8 Special Report.