ID’ing body to take weeks: DNA, dental records to aid in investigation

Skeletal remains found in a wooded area in Greenwood are being sent to the University of Indianapolis for identification, and to try to determine the cause of death.

A man looking for his missing adult son found the remains on Wednesday afternoon. The man told police the clothing looked the same as what his son was last seen wearing, and a wallet found in the clothing had the identification of the man’s son, Greenwood Assistant Police Chief Matt Fillenwarth said.

The remains have not been identified, Fillenwarth said.

Police spent hours Wednesday gathering evidence from the open, wooded land between the Goodwill Outlet Store and the Walmart shopping center, off Emerson Avenue near County Line Road.

Now, the remains are being sent to the University of Indianapolis, where anthropologists will examine them for an official identification, likely using DNA and dental records, Johnson County Coroner Craig Lutz said.

Anthropologists also will work to determine the cause of death, Lutz said. He is researching whether toxicology testing can be done using bone marrow, he said.

He expects identification to take at least three to four weeks, he said.

Investigators are working with the family of the missing man to try to identify the remains, Lutz said.

The body was found in an area known to police as a spot where drug users will gather. The man searching for his son told police his son is a drug user and he had found him at the wooded area before, and decided to look there again when he had not heard from him in weeks, police said.

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Annie Goeller is managing editor of the Daily Journal. She can be reached at or 317-736-2718.