Forensic genealogy could play role in identifying man shot decades ago

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — Law enforcement officials are hoping forensic genealogy will help identify a man shot to death decades ago in western South Dakota.

The man’s skeletal remains were found by trappers near St. Onge in Lawrence County in February 2000. An autopsy determined the man died of multiple gunshots between 1997 and 1999.

The Rapid City Journal says officials earlier released 3D images of the victim’s facial reconstruction, but that has not led to his identity. Now officials are turning to advanced DNA technology and genealogy websites in hopes of identifying him through family members.

Lawrence County state’s attorney John Fitzgerald says the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation is working with Bode Technology, a Virginia-based forensic genealogy company.