Human remains found near Metaline Falls

By: 
RaeLynn Ricarte
Editor

Forestry workers preparing a plot of timber for harvest came across scattered human bones last week, according to Pend Oreille County Sheriff Glenn Blakeslee.
He said the discovery occurred on private property near milepost 6 on Boundary Road, outside Metaline Falls, on Tuesday, Nov. 12.
The remains had been there for several years so it was impossible to tell whether they belonged to a male or female, said Blakeslee.
“We really don’t have much information, it’s really very broad,” he said.
The Washington State Patrol's Criminal Investigation Team assisted the sheriff’s office in processing the scene and collecting evidence.
The remains have been sent to the Medical Examiner's Office in King County where Blakeslee said an anthropologist will be consulted. In addition, a DNA and dental records analysis will be done in an attempt to identify the remains. 
He said there was no timeline for completion of that work, it would depend on the case load at the busy medical examiner’s office.
“We’ve dealt with them before, they are very helpful, but they are also very busy folks,” he said.
Blakeslee said it didn’t appear that the bones belonged to two missing men from the area, one case from about eight years ago and the other about four years old.
“These remains don’t appear to match either of our missing men,” he said.
Pend Oreille County also has two other sets of remains that have never been identified, said Blakeslee.
He said last week was a hectic time in Pend Oreille County. About the same time the bones were found, Blakeslee said searchers began looking in terrain east of Highway 31 near Ione for the plane of a missing pilot from Colville.
“It’s been a little busy,” he said.
On Saturday, the body of Terry Coleman, 67, was recovered fom Sullivan Lake in the search area.
His plane is still believed to be submerged and Blakeslee is hopeful that a passing pilot will see it, and it can be recovered. See related story this page.
The Pend Oreille County Sheriff’s Office is asking people with information that can help identify the newly-found remains, to call the Sheriff's Office at 509-447-1980. 
“We’d really like to know who this is,” said Blakeslee.

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