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Unidentified Woman's body found, South Carolina
NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C.-- Some families in Augusta and Aiken County are waiting for word about a missing loved one, but that news may not be what they are hoping to hear.
This after female human remains are discovered in woods off of Austin Graybill Road Wednesday night in North Augusta.
On Wednesday night, woods in North Augusta turned into a crime scene when someone found human remains scattered and badly decomposed.
"It's obvious the remains have been here for quite some time." says Lt. Tim Pearson with North Augusta Public Safety.
Thursday the remains were excavated. Investigators say underwear on the body suggests it is a woman. The other clothing on the body was rotted. But, tags suggest the woman may have worn larger clothing.
A lot of possibilities but no definite answers.
"TV it all happens in an hour. Not the case here. We're slow. Very methodical." says Lt. Pearson.
A long wait that just got even longer, the autopsy now pushed back until Monday; putting the families of several local missing women on alert.
Here are some of them:
39-year-old Karen Pryor. She disappeared from Augusta in September of 2006.
76-year-old Sadie Ednie who wandered away from her retirement home back in 1992 and 15 years later, still no answers for her family.
34-year-old Lisa Shuttleworth of Aiken is another possibility. She vanished in 2004 and is the county's only active missing person case.
Joining those families is Deborah Dill's. We last spoke with them in May.
"This is an absolute nightmare." says Dill's daughter Amanda Daniels.
A nightmare made worse by false hopes. Dill went missing in March of 2006. And last November, a body surfaced in some Thomson woods.
A bit of hope that turned into disappointment; it turns out the body was that of another 48-year-old missing woman, Lula Bell Scott.
Dill's family hopes this time is different. Here's why:.Richmond county investigators tell News 12 the only dental records they've sent to be looked at in this case are Deborah Dill's.
That might bring some closure the family has long been looking for. "Whatever the reason. If anybody knows anything..if they would just call and help us put an end to this nightmare." pleas Daniels.
And it's not just those families that are paying close attention to this case. Since the remains were not far from I-20, there is the possibility this is another missing woman from another area.
The autopsy was pushed back for scheduling conflicts. It should take place Monday in Newberry.
Last edited by Starless; 06-15-2008 at 10:04 AM.
Local officials continue their investigation of the death of an unidentified individual whose remains were found in a wooded area in North Augusta earlier this month.
"The remains are still in Newberry where they are undergoing microscopic study," said Aiken County Coroner Tim Carlton.
Additional forensic samples also have been sent to the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division for DNA testing, and to a forensic dentist who is analyzing the lower jaw from the body to chart the identifying characteristics, Carlton explained.
Ideally, the person, when he or she went missing, was entered into the National Crime Information Computer, and there will be a match, officials said.
But as of late Monday, no positive identification had been made.
Investigators have not said the cause of death or speculated on the duration the body has been in the woods, other than to say it has been there for "some time," said Lt. Tim Pearson, a North Augusta Public Safety officer.
The remains were unearthed by a father and son walking in a wooded area along Austin Graybill Road in North Augusta around 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7.
Officials have not said what else, if anything, was found near the body, or whether it was a full skeleton.
Pearson did say investigators are also looking into how the remains ended up on the remote piece of property, explaining that the case is very active.
The discovery is not unsimilar to that of one made in March 2004, when the 12-year-old remains of an Aiken man were uncovered in Hitchcock Woods.
In May of 1992, the then 32-year-old Paul Gregory was reported missing by his parents, Bill and Betty Gregory of Queens, N.Y.
Carlton said the current case and the Gregory investigation differ, saying that in the Gregory case an investigator remembered when Gregory went missing and recalled that the Aiken man had left a note at his home on Tennessee Avenue stating he would commit suicide in Hitchcock Woods.
"That was a fairly quick investigation," Carlton said.
There were dental records to cross reference, he explained.
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