ISU students will help search cave for human head

POCATELLO -- As the investigation into human remains found in Clark County in 1979 continues, law enforcement there are now partnering with Idaho State University. And the anthropology department has a new tool that could help crack the case.

Kyra Stull is an assistant professor in the Anthropology Department at Idaho State University. She, along with other staff and grad students, will be performing an analysis in the Clark County cold case.

"The whole point of a forensic anthropological analysis establishes a biological profile. So we estimate age, sex, ancestry, stature. We do any interpretation of trauma and pathology," said Stull.

On Friday, the group will be going to the Civil Defense Caves in Dubois-- where, in 1979, a human torso was found. In 1991, the arms and legs were found in a different location in the same cave. The Clark County Sheriff's Department has asked for the help from ISU.

"Normally when forensic anthropologists arrive at a crime scene, we are primarily going to be able to document the entire scene, which involves mapping, taking notes, and taking photographic evidence as well," said Stull.

And the Anthropology Department at ISU is partnering with the Idaho Virtualization Laboratory to use a scanning device which can make a 3D map of a large area up to 300 yards out.

"We can go on site with the scanner, scan the entire cave, scan the entire floor, pull that all back into the lab and have effectively a map in three dimensions of the entire site," said Nicholas Clement, Assistant Manager of the Idaho Virtualization Laboratory.

The forensic analysts will then work with local law enforcement-- who can match any remains found to missing persons reports.

"We want to be able to identify the individual, give him his name back, and be able to give family answers as to what happened," said John Clements, a Deputy with the Clark County Sheriff's Office.

Stull says they are looking for a white male approximately 35-45 years old who is between 5'6" and 6'2" tall. Anybody with any information is urged to contact the Clark County Sherriff's Office at (208) 374-5403.


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