Search yields clues to identity of dead body

Day four into the investigation of decomposed human remains discovered near McCullough Creek and an update on additional physical evidence recovered from the scene by officers and K-9 units brought in from around the state.

“Thusfar, we have not been able to make a positive identification of the skeletal remains discovery Sunday by a potential buyer who was inspecting the remote wooded area in southwest St Johns County,” said Sgt. Charles E. Mulligan, Sheriff’s Public Information Officer.

Historic City News and other St Augustine and St Johns County area media were called to the Sheriff’s Office yesterday afternoon to view some of the evidence collected in this case with the hope that someone who knows something about the identity of this person will come forward with that information.

A partial list of items recovered to date includes a pair of blue shorts with a brown belt, blue long sleeve shirt, a pair of 42-44 sized boxer shorts, a pair of size 10 1/2 men’s shoes and a complete set of upper dentures. All of the items were found within 7 feet of the skeletal remains, but the sunglasses were about 15 feet away from the remains.

A “GM” car key recovered from the scene was taken to a local dealer for inspection. It was determined that about 40 different types of cars could be matched with the key.

Since local missing persons files have not provided helpful direction in this case, District 23 Medical Examiner, Dr. Predag Bulic, is sending the deteriorated skeletal remains to a forensic anthropologist to determine the sex, race and age of the body. Dr. Bulic has also ordered DNA testing. The bone structure tends to indicate that authorities have uncovered the body of an older, adult male; however, Dr. Bulic made clear that he is “not ruling any possibility out” until his examination is complete.

According to Dr. Bulic, the remains recovered are in an advanced stage of decomposition, and may have been exposed to the elements for an extended period — perhaps years. Further forensic examination of the remains continues.

Photo credits: © 2012 Historic City News archive photograph

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