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LAKE MILTON Authorities consider DNA tests for jawbone



Published: Sat, August 31, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Officials might match DNA from a tooth against missing-person records.

LAKE MILTON -- Authorities still have no clue as to the origin of a human jawbone that was found in Milton Township nearly three months ago.

Mahoning County Coroner David Kennedy said DNA testing might be the next step and the last resort.

A township resident found the bone in a pile of slag on his property in June. The slag had been trucked to property from another location about eight years ago.

Not for teaching

Kennedy originally thought the bone might have been used as a teaching tool for anatomy or forensics, but an anthropologist ruled out that option.

Earlier this month, a team of search and rescue dogs was brought to the area to look for other human remains, but found none.

There are no other leads as to where the bone may have come from, Kennedy said.

Now he's thinking of extracting DNA from one of the teeth that's still intact in the jawbone. That information could then be cross-checked against state and national records of DNA taken from missing people, Kennedy said.

If a match is found, it could help officials determine whom the bone belonged to.

The drawback is that DNA testing can be expensive, and there is no guarantee that it will help solve the mystery.

"I think that's a real longshot, but it might be worth a try," Kennedy said.




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