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Fingers may point to identity of 'mummified' body

Posted: April 15, 2013 2:00 a.m.
Updated: April 15, 2013 2:00 a.m.

Investigators with the county coroner’s office hope “re-hydrated” fingers will identify a Hispanic woman whose body was found “mummified” in a tarp and dumped at the side of San Francisquito Canyon Road last week.

Investigators assigned to a special identification branch at the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner have been called in to identify the “severely decomposed” body of Jane Doe Number 23, Coroner Investigator Dana Bee told The Signal Sunday.

“We have nothing yet,” he said. “We’ve sent the case to Ident.

“We have a lot to do forensic-wise,” he said. “We have a long list to go through.

“This is a mummified body, severely decomposed, so we’re hoping to re-hydrate the fingers,” he said.

Bee said the forensic team hopes to transform the dehydrated flesh in fingers to obtain fingerprints.

“We dis-articulate them, put them in a chemical solution, then roll them out (on fingerprinting ink) as we do with fingers,” he said.

About 4:45 p.m. Wednesday, deputies from the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station responded to San Francisquito Canyon Road, about five miles south of Spunky Canyon Road in the Angeles National Forest.

They had received a call of a possible dead body, deputies with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a press release issued Thursday.

The body was discovered by Los Angeles Department of Water and Power workers doing regular maintenance, Lt. Eddie Hernandez of the Homicide Bureau told The Signal the night of the discovery.

The next day, homicide detectives issued a press release asking the public’s help in identifying the woman.


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