South Jersey Girl’s Death Focus of Netflix’s Unsolved Mysteries
The death of Tiffany Valiante, the 18-year-old Mays Landing girl who was hit by a NJ Transit train on July 12, 2015, is the focus of the first episode of Netflix's third season of Unsolved Mysteries.
Unsolved Mysteries: Volume 3 premieres October 18 on Netflix.
The episode concerning Valiante titled is "Mystery at Mile Marker 45"
When talented 18-year-old volleyball star Tiffany Valiante was hit by a train on a remote, unlit stretch of tracks in Mays Landing, New Jersey, authorities quickly ruled her case a suicide. However, Tiffany’s family and a team of pro bono experts believe she was murdered and her body, left on the tracks, to destroy the evidence.
Valiante's death was ruled a suicide at the time after an investigation by NJ Transit Police, but her family never believed Tiffany committed suicide and they continue to the present day to pursue a murder investigation.
This case is well-remembered locally. Seven years later, you still see posters around South Jersey offering a $20,000 reward from her family for information on "the truth" behind Tiffany's death.
From the family's perspective, there certainly are many questions and inconsistencies about the case.
They say Tiffany did not seemed depressed before she died. She was excited about having just graduated from Oakcrest High and looked forward to playing volleyball on a college scholarship in the fall.
On the night in question, Valiante would have had to have walked five miles in her bare feet to the spot on the railroad tracks in Galloway Township where she died.
Tiffany suffered with Nyctophobia, an extreme fear of the dark, and would not have wanted to be in the dark spot on railroad tracks at night where she died.
Tiffany's cellphone, which the family says she always had with her, was found later discarded outside her home.
In 2020, family attorney Paul D'Amato convinced an Atlantic County Superior Court Judge to reopen discovery into the case and DNA from the case tested, something that never happened at the time of Tiffany's death.
A recent Daily Beast article on Tiffany's case brings several other interesting bits of information to light, including discrepancies in the statement taken from the NJ Transit engineer at the controls of the train that night, a fight that occurred between Tiffany and her mother and subsequent counseling and Tiffany having come out as gay in the months before her death.
Beginning Tuesday, Oct 18, we'll see what light Unsolved Mysteries, returning to Netflix after a two-year hiatus, can bring to the mystery behind Tiffany Valiante's death.