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UNIDENTIFIED

Skeleton found near migrant camp

Posted on May 15, 2022

Updated on May 22, 2022

Local newsUnidentified

Unidentified is a weekly series examining the more than 120 cases of unidentified human remains discovered in North Carolina. News Editor Lindell J. Kay produces each installment for The Enterprise of Spring Hope and other Restoration NewsMedia newspapers.

Click here to read previous installments in the series, along with case updates and additional resources, on Kay's Unidentified blog.

BENSON — A laborer wandering through the Johnston County woods near a migrant camp three decades ago thought he found a pile of rags until he brushed away some leaves and found himself staring into the empty eye sockets of a decomposed human skull.

The laborer had wandered about 600 feet from Rudolph Jones Farm at McGee’s Crossroads on Dec. 30, 1992, when he made his gruesome discovery, according to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, which lists the case as No. 2647.

The skeleton belonged to a Black man who died about six months prior to being found, according to his autopsy report, which lists his manner of death as a homicide.

Washed ashore, unearthed in shallow graves, stumbled upon in the woods, discovered in abandoned houses, killed on busy roads and located in rivers, ponds and along railroad tracks, more than 120 bodies remain unidentified in North Carolina. This is one of their stories.

In life, the skeleton stood 5 feet, 9 inches tall with an unknown weight. He had black hair and an unknown eye color.

Fingerprints aren’t available, but DNA was saved. Dentals charts are available showing exposed roots on teeth No. 3 and 5, according to information from the Doe Network, a volunteer-run international clearinghouse for unidentified and missing persons.

The skeleton wore a blue sweater; tan shirt with the words “Florida” and “Marco Island” with swan heads on the front size XL; blue pants, dark colored sweatpants size M 32-34; tan swimsuit; dark socks; and tan high-top canvas shoes with no size identified but shoe measured 11½ inches long.

Anyone with information about the cases is asked to call the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation at 800-334-3000.

Editor’s note: Unidentified is a weekly series examining the more than 120 cases of unidentified human remains discovered in North Carolina. News Editor Lindell J. Kay produces each installment for The Enterprise of Spring Hope and other Restoration NewsMedia newspapers.

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