SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Sacramento police announced a break in an 18-ear-old cold case with a surprise twist for investigators.

Ever since June 2001, authorities have been trying to crack the care of a missing Jane Doe, believed to be a white woman in her early twenties. According to the coroner, the woman was burned alive, her body found in a dumpster off Power Inn Road.

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Looking for leads, authorities worked with a forensic artist, using the victim’s skull to create a 3D model of what the woman looked like, hoping to give the victim’s family some answers. CBS13 spoke with that artist, Barbara Anderson, six months after the murder.

“If I can bring closure to them, at least they know what happened to her and they can move on with their lives,” Anderson said.

Meanwhile, forensic pathologists continued resubmitting DNA samples to be tested as DNA technology evolved. But years later, there were still no clues about her identity… until now.

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“It’s huge. We have a huge lead. That’s why we’re putting it out now,” said Karl Chan with the Sacramento Police Department.

Investigators say DNA submitted to a gene ploy lab led to missing woman Perrean Gray, which was a surprise for detectives looking for a missing white woman and Gray was black.

“Investigation has its turns and ultimately, this is where we’re at in this investigation at this time,” said Chan.

Experts tell CBS13 forensic science isn’t always an exact science. But the new information has led them to San Francisco where Gray was reported missing. Gray’s family is now assisting in the investigation.

“There have been so many cases that have been made through DNA technology and hopefully this is one of those that can be made as well. It makes that a success story that we can finally bring someone to justice,” said Chan.

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There is a $1000 reward for info leading to an arrest from Crimestoppers.