Andrea Lynn Hug: Found dead at Montana de Oro in 1998

Andrea Lynn Hug
Andrea Lynn Hug

Andrea Lynn Hug's body was found on a rocky beach north of Spooner's Cove at Montaña de Oro State Park on Oct. 12, 1998.

Her death was originally ruled an accident, but the Sheriff's Department reopened the case as a homicide in January 2003 after re-examining evidence. After Hug's body was disinterred that April, a forensic pathologist looking at wounds on her head suggested that she may have been struck before she fell.

Hug, a 30-year-old woman from the Northern California town of Garberville, had driven to the park Oct. 11, 1998, but failed to return that night to a friend's house in Atascadero where she was staying.

Authorities found her body the next morning.

Investigators interviewed scores of people in the case, including Rex Krebs, now on death row for raping and strangling two local college students, and Peter Derks, who is accused of raping and murdering a Cal Poly student at the park in 1985. Both men were eliminated as suspects in the Hug case.

In October 2003, detectives released a composite sketch of a man who may have been the last person seen speaking with Hug.

A European woman told Interpol, an international police organization, that she saw the man at least twice Oct. 11, 1998, around sunset — once near a woman who resembled Hug and several hours later in a parking lot near Spooner's Cove. She noticed his van parked near Hug's Ford Escort.

In 2005, Sheriff's detectives narrowed their focus to a single "person of interest," who lived in the county at the time and had minor criminal convictions.

Detectives identified the person of interest by interviewing people who had access in 1998 to a vehicle described as being at Montaña de Oro when Hug was there.

No arrests were ever made.