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45-year-old body found in clothes bag in rural Nevada identified as Ohio woman Florence Charleston

LAS VEGAS (AP) — In 1978, a clothing bag containing the badly decomposed body of a woman was found in a remote area of ​​northern Nevada.

The case was quickly closed and the victim remained unnamed for 45 years.

But on Wednesday, the Nevada State Police announced they had finally identified him thanks to advances in DNA testing. She was Florence Charleston of Cleveland, Ohio, and had moved to Portland, Oregon shortly before her death.

How Charleston died and was buried in a shallow grave 535 miles (860 km) from his new home remains a mystery. Police said Wednesday that an investigation into her death was ongoing, in a news release announcing a DNA match.

Charleston moved to the Pacific Northwest in the early 1970s, according to police. By then, she had lost contact with her relatives, including her niece, who would play a key role in police investigations decades later.

Charleston’s body was found in a clothing bag in October 1978. Officials with the Pershing County Sheriff’s Department, the first lead investigative agency, also found some women’s clothing in the bag.

A forensic autopsy identified the decomposing body of a woman in her 40s, but the cause of death could not be determined, police said.

The case was later registered with the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, along with renderings of what detectives thought the woman looked like when she died.

According to the description, the woman was believed to be 5 feet 5 inches tall with red or auburn hair. Investigators also thought she may have been left-handed. Clothing found with her body included a dark green sweater with a white safety pin on the front, dark green pants, and a pink long-sleeve sweater.

In the spring of 1979, Nevada State Police detectives were called in to help with the investigation. They tried to reconstruct the digital face. They compared dental records with other missing persons and unsolved cases. They searched for clues in the clothing discarded with the body.

However, their efforts failed.

And in March last year, the police announced a partnership with Osram. Osram is a private research institute specializing in forensic genealogy analysis that has helped solve countless unsolved cases across the United States.

In a separate news release, Osram said Wednesday that the DNA taken from the corpse was used to “create a comprehensive DNA profile of an unidentified woman,” allowing investigators to identify Charleston’s niece. Stated.

Using a DNA sample provided by the niece, the lab was able to link Charleston to a 45-year-old body, police said.

https://www.wkbn.com/news/ohio/remains-found-stuffed-in-garment-bag-45-years-ago-in-rural-nevada-idd-as-ohio-woman/ 45-year-old body found in clothes bag in rural Nevada identified as Ohio woman Florence Charleston

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