Police look for additional human remains after skull found
Published Monday, January 14, 2013 9:57AM EST
Last Updated Monday, January 14, 2013 1:55PM EST
Specially-trained police officers are scouring a wooded area in Vaughan for additional human remains after a skull was found near a golf course on the weekend.
In a case that has so far been classified as suspicious, investigators have more questions than answers as they try to identify the person and confirm whether he or she was the victim of foul play.
So far, York Regional Police do not know the sex, age or ethnicity of the person, or how the person's skull wound up near a highway or how long it had been there before it was found Sunday afternoon.
At a news conference at the scene Monday afternoon, Det.-Sgt. John Braybrook said it may take "a day or two" to determine the sex of the person.
Once that happens, police are hoping to identify the person through dental records or DNA analysis, and they will take a look at unsolved missing persons cases, if needed, Braybrook told reporters.
The gruesome discovery was made by a passerby near Uplands Golf and Ski Club, near Bathurst Street and Highway 407.
The passerby, who was out for a walk, took a photograph of the skull and sent it to police, who arrived at the scene with a coroner. A short time later, police confirmed to CP24 that the skull is human.
The wooded area where the skull was found was still sealed off by police tape Monday, as a search and rescue team, including a canine unit, went through the bush to look for additional human remains or clues.
Nearby, officers canvassed homes to ask people if they have any information that may assist investigators.
Braybrook said the search of the two-hectare area may last into the week.
“It’s fairly heavy bush and it is rather hilly so it may take a few days and hopefully the weather co-operates with us,” he said. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to make some good progress as far as identifying and retrieving other remains.”
Braybrook said it’s too early to say whether the person is a homicide victim, or someone whose remains were disturbed and scattered by animals.
As police try to solve the mystery, they are asking anyone with information to call detectives at 1-866-287-5025 ext. 7865 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
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