A Pennsylvania woman who disappeared more than 30 years ago and was believed dead by her family was recently found living in a nursing home in Puerto Rico, her family and police said at a news conference Thursday.
Patricia Kopta, now 83, was last seen in Pittsburgh in the summer of 1992, according to a missing persons flier released by the Pennsylvania Emergency Response Center.
Her husband, Bob Kopta, reported her missing a few months later in the fall. At the time, he informed authorities that it was not uncommon for his wife to “go out of sight for short periods,” according to the flier.
“I came home one night and she was gone, and no one knew where she was,” Kopta said at the news conference with Ross Township police.
Police said they were first informed of the discovery of the missing woman when an agent from the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) and a social worker from Puerto Rico contacted them last year saying they believed Patricia was living in an adult care home in Puerto Rico.
“What we were told was that she had been in her care since 1999, when she was found needy on the streets of Puerto Rico,” Ross Township Deputy Chief Brian Kohlhepp said.
INTERPOL and the social worker said Patricia was found wandering the streets and that over the years she had “refused to talk about her private life or where she came from,” Kohlhepp said.