Investigators trying to determine if 2012 fire is linked to bones found in Akron home

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AKRON, Ohio — On Friday, a human skull was found on the sidewalk outside an abandoned house on Marcy Street.

It’s unclear where it came from or who it belongs to, but investigators are now trying to figure that out.

“We found human remains and we’re in the process of trying to recover all of the remains that we can find associated with this house,” said Dr. Dennis Dirkmaat, a Professor of Anthropology at Mercyhurst University.

He and his graduate students were called in to assist with the investigation. He said they have spotted a number of animal remains in the house, and that’s making the search a little more difficult. He also said there was a fire there back in 2012, and that caused considerable damage.

“Some of the floors are open and there’s an area of the house where we’re finding a fire altered room and finding some remains there,” said Dr. Dirkmaat.

He said it appears the skull and some of the other remains were burnt, but that’s really all they know. They aren’t sure if the victim died before or after the fire.

“We’re trying to figure out the association of the burning to the fire that may have been at this place and trying to figure out if they are all related. I mean certainly the skull being found on the sidewalk, it has been moved so we don’t know where that was originally,” he said.

In the meantime, his crew is continuing to look for evidence, and they hope to eventually identify the victim. However, that could take a while. They still need to do a lot of testing.

“In this case it would be a standard practice of looking at the teeth for one, documenting fillings and things like that and then if we can get a match we’re good, and if not, then we might have to go to DNA,” he explained.

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