San Diego Police Department

40 Years Later: Teen Strangled, Killed at Torrey Pines State Beach in 1978 Cold Case

Police are still searching for a suspect and are asking the public for help

It's been 40 years since the gruesome death of 15-year-old Barbara Nantais, and investigators from the San Diego Police Department are asking the public for help.

Nantais was found beaten and strangled to death on the shores of Torrey Pines State Beach on the morning of August 13, 1978.

She was raped and had one of her breasts cut off.

She went to the beach the night before with her boyfriend, James Alt, SDPD said.

They were lying together on the sand when they were attacked, according to SDPD.

Alt, 17 at the time, suffered a major head injury and couldn’t remember what happened the night before. His skull was crushed with a rock and a fire log.

He was found semi-conscious near Nantais’ body.

In 2013, investigators used updated equipment to follow a new lead, but no suspect was caught.

Crime Stoppers is offering $1,000 to anyone with information that can lead to an arrest.

If you have any information about the attack or murder, call SDPD’s Homicide Unit at (619) 531-2293 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

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