LIVE OAK, Fla. - An unidentified woman found unconscious and with head injuries alongside a north Florida highway three weeks ago has emerged from a coma and may soon be able to assist authorities in determining who she is and what happened to her.
Suwannee County Sheriff Tony Cameron said the woman gave a thumbs up and down sign to investigators at her hospital bedside Tuesday, and that the swelling about her head has gone down.
"She's coming around," said Cameron. "But it looks like it will be a very slow process."
The sheriff said a motorist noticed the woman's body beside the intersection of U.S. 90 West and 153rd Road North around 10 a.m. on July 16. He said the woman was bruised about the head and upper body.
Tire marks were found on the pavement near the site of the woman's body but Cameron said it has not been determined if they were related to her injuries.
He said it is possible she was hit by a vehicle or was dumped alongside the highway or crawled there from elsewhere.
Cameron said the sheriff's office has received hundreds of calls and emails from people who think they might know the victim but none of the leads have panned out.
The sheriff released a photo of the woman in her hospital bed Tuesday after she came out of her coma.
He said the woman is believed to be in her mid-20s, has blue eyes, brown hair and is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs about 120 pounds. She has tattoos of a wolf on her shoulder, the name "David" on the left side of her chest, a dancing person on her left ankle and letters or symbols on her upper right arm.
The sheriff said she was wearing blue jean shorts, a Grateful Dead T-shirt and no shoes.
Details for this story were provided by the Suwannee Democrat, Live Oak, Fla.