Cold case files still not resolved
A Crisp County death investigation from April of 1972 is still open and that's not the only interesting fact about this certain case.
"The most prevalent feature we found, the dental work, was basically fully intact. There was some hair still attracted to the skull, a minute amount. I carried the skull to my personal dentist and he said if we can find the right dental work, if this had actually been a patient of his he could identify it immediately do to the extensiveness of the dental work," said Crisp County Coroner J.D. Rainey.
Cases like this, investigators say put their work to the test.
Lt. Carmelitta Preston of the Albany Police Department says "not only is that detective working cold case homicides, then you have other cases that are coming in also so you have that on the detective too and you have the family members calling you so it can take a big toll on the detectives."
But what makes a case cold?
"A case that goes past the 6 month and older, it becomes a cold case, when there is nothing else that we have exhausted all means of information that comes in that's when a case becomes cold," said Lt. Preston.
In the 70's, most investigators relied on a pen and paper but documentation now is even more extensive.
The cases that were investigated back then were not as in-depth as they are now. We have now a case reporting manual. Those help young investigators have a lot of experience" said Mark Pro, a special agent in charge with the Georgia Bureau of Investigations.
But for this cold case, something beneficial came from their finds.
"I might note that this case they didn't have any dental records from this person but they did through DNA testing," said Rainey.
While they weren't able to find the hand and foot of this unknown male, they were able to find a large portion of bones intact with no sign of any gunshot wounds.
The GBI crime lab very few years ago took the skull and recreated the face of the person killed and shortly after they place that picture on the doe network and they received a lead," said Rainey.
The network is currently called unsolved cases on the GBI website and a lead came from a young lady.
Rainey says, "She was very young when her father disappeared and they never heard anything from him but this reconstruction looked very much how she remembered her father."
After DNA testing they found out that this was not her father and the case remains cold.
Rainey says "it is one that has always stayed with me I've hoped that before my time comes to go on I could see it solved and I keep hoping that some good lead would come up but so far nothing."
If you know anything about the case in Crisp County you're asked to call the Crisp County Sheriff's Office at 229-276-2600.
But this isn't the only cold case in our area. After calling around to several agencies we found out there was another cold case in December of 1972 in Dougherty County. Remains of an unidentified black male, five foot ten was found on Piney Woods Creek Bridge on Highway 257.
If you know anything about the case in Dougherty County you're asked to call the Sylvester GBI at 229-777-2080.