SAN DIEGO — Over three decades after Margaret Orozco Jackson’s body was found in Scripps Ranch, her family is one step closer towards getting justice in connection to her death.

Jackson’s sister, niece and great niece went to the downtown San Diego courthouse Tuesday, prepared to see her alleged killer for the first time.

“It’s been a long time coming,” her niece, Andrea Carrasco, told FOX 5 through tears. “She was beautiful, she was a beautiful woman.” 

Jackson was found on July 11, 1990 on a hillside near the 10300 block of Scripps Ranch Boulevard with a rope around her neck. She was 47 at the time of her death.

Due to the location where Jackson was found and similarities to other homicide cases involving other women, the San Diego Metropolitan Homicide Task Force took over the investigation.

The task force was comprised of a regional group of investigators who were assigned to investigate more than 40 homicides involving women who were sex workers that may have been killed by a serial killer or a suspect who targeted women in that industry, SDPD said.

Carrasco recalled finding out about her aunt’s death while watching a news report about the discovery of a “Jane Doe.”

“The only way that they could describe her is that she had a tattoo on her thigh that said ‘Tommy’ and as soon as my mom heard that, she yelled out ‘Margaret! That’s my sister Margaret,'” she said.

However, after months trying to find her killer, the case went cold.

In 2022, detectives reopened the investigation with the hopes that they could get new leads through a fresh set of eyes or new forensic technology. That eventually led SDPD to the arrest of 62-year-old Randall Oyler earlier this week.

When detectives made the break in the case, authorities said Oyler was already in custody at San Diego Central County Jail for a warrant for probation violation.

Oyler was scheduled to be arraigned for murder charges in connection to Jackson’s death on Tuesday. At this time, it is unknown if he is believed to have any suspected involvement in the other cases the Metropolitan Homicide Task Force was investigating.

However, shortly before his arraignment, people in the courtroom heard a loud bang, which was believed to be Oyler falling. The judge later said that he had experienced a medical issue and was transported to the hospital. His arraignment was postponed to Wednesday at 1:30 p.m.

“We were finally going to get to learn who he was,” Carrasco said. “I don’t know if we’ll ever learn why.”