Officials with the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office are still working to identify human remains found in Gorman shortly after a March 14 fire near Highway 138.
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Sheriff’s Department officials reported Sunday that Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner personnel recovered the skeletal remains of an adult man found in a ravine off Ridge Route Road and Highway 138 in Gorman.
“They’ve been looking at some missing persons with dental records and sent some bone missing with DNA,” said Assistant Chief Ed Winter of the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office. “So we’re still trying to find out who it is.”
Detectives believe foul play was involved, according to a Nixle report put out by Sheriff’s Department officials. The victim’s body has been at the location for an extended period of time, possibly up to four years, officials said.
Right now, the victim, an adult male, is identified as John Doe No. 59. The release of the official cause of death has been deferred pending a full screen of tests, Winter said.
Based on evidence recovered from the scene, detectives have determined the victim did not die as a result of the Pine fire, which burned about 150 acres near Ridge Route Road.
The remains were reported to Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies around 11 a.m. March 15, but it was not initially known if the remains were human.
The county contracts with forensic odontologists, who are not part of the regular staff of the Coroner’s Office, one official said. But there hasn’t been any positive matches, yet.
The case is being investigated by the Homicide Bureau of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Identification through dental records usually takes anywhere from 10 to 14 days, according to one official.
The delay comes from having to coordinate with the schedules of the specialist, who have their own practices and to make sure the identifications are positive.
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Source: Santa Clarita News