Medical Examiner's Office Tries to Crack Cold Cases

Wednesday, June 3rd 2009, 8:31 pm

By: News 9

By Rusty Surette, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- The Oklahoma State Medical Examiner's Office is taking advantage of a free service in Texas that will hopefully solve dozens of mysteries in Oklahoma.

On Wednesday, the office shipped off four samples of unidentified remains to the University of North Texas' Center for Human Identification. The center will use DNA technology that may help identify who the remains belong to.

"This is an on-going process that certainly we've dedicated more attention to lately. We have a full time investigator that's working on getting these 125 unidentified cases identified. We want to put this on the top of our priority list," said spokeswoman Cherokee Ballard.

The remains have been collected for many years and are currently stored in boxes and tucked away in a hallway closet.

Investigators are hoping the testing that will take place in Texas will help them learn more about whom the bones belong to, and eventually give Oklahoma families closure.

"It's very important to us, so that we are able to identify these people, some who have been here for a very, very long time. Some of them, we think we know who they are, but we just want to make sure," Ballard said.

The testing at the University of North Texas could take up to a year.


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