Cold Case Unravels: John Doe Has New Face

By KBJR News 1

June 12, 2013 Updated Jun 12, 2013 at 9:13 PM CST

Hermantown, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Hermantown police hope a technologically created face for an unidentified man will help solve a nearly 4 decade cold case.

It was April 16, 1976, when police responded to an address in the 3900 block of Lavaque Road.
They were called to investigate the discovery of human remains.
A partially unearthed skeleton was found in the backyard of a home, along with some personal belongings including a lighter with the letters A.T.C.
With no leads the case went cold.

Then in 2011, The St. Louis County Medical Examiners Office started going over old cases, re-opening the John Doe case.
"I reached out to Joe Mullins of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children,” Kolleen Kennedy, Supervising Investigator of the St. Louis County Medical Examiners Office said. “He also teaches at a university and he graciously agreed to put a face on this at no charge.”
"Using tools, techniques and scientific developments that were not available to the police 37 years ago when they discovered him, the remains were sent to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension for DNA extraction and analysis," Deputy Chief Shawn Padden of the Hermantown Police Department said.
Authorities learned that the body is that of a white man between the ages of 30 and 50.
He had advanced osteoarthritis and walked with a limp and had upper and lower dentures.
DNA was extracted and now with the face, they hope someone will recognize him and they can compare their DNA.
"What the BCA is asking, is for the relatives of missing persons to come forward and provide a DNA sample,” Catherine Knutson, Laboratory Director of the BCA said.
Authorities hope they will finally be able to put John Doe to rest with a name and a family.
If you believe you recognize this person you're asked to contact Hermantown Police.
Bryce Henry
bhenry@kbjr.com