Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, Summit County Medical Examiner Dr. Lisa Kohler and Twinsburg Police Chief Christopher J. Noga today unveiled the clay model, which was created by a forensic artist with the Attorney General's Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) in an effort to help Summit County authorities identify the man.
"This person is someone’s son, and there is a family out there who loved him. Now we need the public’s help to find this person’s loved ones some answers," DeWine said. "This facial reconstruction we recently started doing at BCI is a new tool we hope will lead to positively identifying remains in cases like this one."
His remains were found on Feb. 18, 1982 behind a business at 3047 Cannon Road in Twinsburg. He is believed to be an African American male between 20 and 30 years old and about 5-foot-6. Additional details such as weight, hair, or eye color are unknown.
Items such as hairstyle are the artist's estimations to complete the reconstruction and should not be considered significant markers for identification.
More than 900 law enforcement agencies today received this bulletin in an effort to bring widespread attention to the case.
"While his remains were discovered in 1982, we believe that his death occurred approximately a year and half before that," said Chief Christopher J. Noga. "We are really hoping people take a good look at this BCI facial reconstruction. It may lead to us being able to finally identify him."
BCI's forensic artist is available to assist local law enforcement with the creation of forensic facial reconstruction models to help identify unidentified skeletal remains. This is the second facial reconstruction created by BCI in northeast Ohio, and the fifth reconstruction statewide. A Greene County Jane Doe was identified as a Florida woman following BCI's creation of a clay model in December 2016. A Jane Doe reconstruction and John Doe reconstruction were created for two separate, still-unidentified decedents in Marion County earlier this year, and the clay model of a John Doe in an unsolved Akron investigation was created in July.
Missing Persons Unit analysts can also provide case review, investigative assistance, link charts, and mapping.
BCI also offers the Ohio LINK (Linking Individuals Not Known) Program, a free service to police, coroners, and families of missing individuals. The LINK Program was established through the Attorney General's Office in 1999 to help match DNA taken from family members of missing individuals to DNA from unidentified remains. Samples of DNA submitted by family members as part of the LINK Program are compared only to DNA samples of unidentified remains submitted through similar programs nationwide. There are currently 194 open cases in the Ohio LINK database.
For tips about this Summit County John Doe case or for information about BCI's Missing Persons Unit call 855-BCI-OHIO (855-224-6446).