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UPDATE: Bone fragments found in Franklin County not human

Updated: Jun 27, 2018


FRANKLIN COUNTY – The Virginia Department of Forensic Science in Roanoke has determined that the bone fragment, which was found on private property, on Iron Ridge Road in Franklin County, was not of human origin. Experts determined the bone fragment came from an animal.

The Virginia State Police have closed the investigation.


Original: FRANKILN COUNTY, Va. – Virginia State Police were called to a residence on Iron Ridge Road at 10:50 a.m. on Friday, (Jun 22), to the report of a possible bone fragment which was reportedly found in the path of the Mountain Valley Pipeline.  

The trooper arrived at the residence at 11:23 a.m. and was presented a plastic bag containing a bone fragment.  Mark Joyner with the Association for the Study of Archaeological Properties, had possession of the bone fragment, which he retrieved from his vehicle.  Mr. Joyner stated the bone fragment appeared to be a portion of a vertebrate from a mammal. The owner of the property, on which the bone fragment was found, a Mr. Daniel Angles; reportedly found the fragment sometime between 8 and 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, (Jun 21) while walking on a portion of his land.  The land wasused to grow agriculture prior to the Mountain Valley Pipelineeasement.  Mr. Angles had located the fragment that evening, but did not contact law enforcement until the following day.

Mr. Angles and Mr. Joyner lead investigators to the location where the bone was reportedly found.  A search of the immediate area did not produce any other remains.  It was unclear if the bone fragment was from an animal or human origin.  It was determined that since the remains were removed from the location they were found, investigators would determine if the remains were human before they would investigate further.

The remains were transported to the Virginia Department of Forensic Science in Roanoke for evaluation, which may take several days.  Once the origin and the age of the fragment are determined, this will dictate how the Virginia State Police will proceed.

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