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Person to Identify - Police seek public assistance to identify human remains

Posted on Wednesday July 11, 2018
On Sunday July 21, 2013, at approximately 4:15pm, Niagara Regional Police Service (NRPS) uniform officers were called to the Niagara River Parkway south of East West Line in the Town of Niagara on the Lake for reports of a body in the water.
 
The remains were brought to shore and an investigation commenced by 2 District (Niagara Falls) Criminal Investigations Branch (CIB) and the Forensics Unit with the assistance of the Coroner.
 
The remains were in an advanced state of decomposition, thus it was not possible to determine sex or possible age of the individual at the scene.
 
On July 22, 2013 a post mortem was conducted at the Hamilton General Hospital.  It was believed that due to the advanced stage of decomposition the deceased had been in the water for a long period of time. The exact cause of death and the sex of the individual remained unknown.
 
Investigators compared a number of on file missing person's cases in Canada and the United States with negative results.
 
In September of 2013 with the assistance of scientists from the Centre of Forensic Sciences in Toronto a DNA analysis determined that the deceased was a male.  The DNA profile was uploaded to a DNA database for future comparisons.
 
With all investigative avenues exhausted the police investigation was suspended pending new information.
 
In November of 2013 when police investigators were unable to identify the deceased, the Coroner's office requested the remains be sent to the Ontario Forensic Pathology Service.  The Ontario Forensic Pathology Service was to conduct an anthropological analysis in order to create a biological profile of the individual.  
 
The remains of the deceased were examined by Dr. Kathy Gruspier who is a Forensic Anthropologist.  The anthropological examination lead to further descriptive information about the deceased.
- the ancestry was estimated as African with possibly some European
- the age at death was estimated to be 40-60 years
- the living height was calculated to be between 5'5' to 5'11"
- the advanced decomposition prevented an estimation of living weight
- the deceased was found to have dental fillings
- teeth discoloration suggested he was a smoker
- the deceased was believed to be in the water for at least one year, possibly 2-3 years
 
In conjunction with the anthropological examination, Ontario Provincial Police Forensic Artist Constable Duncan Way was able to develop a facial approximation.
 
The Niagara Regional Police Service is appealing to the public and media to share this image and information in the hopes of identifying the deceased male.
 
Anyone with information is asked to contact Niagara Regional Police Detective Constable Sara Mummery at (905) 688-4111, Badge 9427

Incident Number: 13-63213
Submitted By: Stephanie Sabourin
Approved By: Stephanie Sabourin

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