Hinesville Police think they know who the person is whose skeleton was found Sunday evening, but officers were awaiting forensic reports before making any announcement.
The gruesome discovery was made by Barbara Johnson, a biology teacher, according to an incident report filed by HPD Officer Michael Ramirez.
The report said Johnson was been walking her dog in a heavily wooded drainage area between Pinefore Lane and Caines Road around 6 p.m., when she saw what appeared to be human bones. Initially the bones were reported to be from a woman, but officials now say they believe they are from a man.
HPD Det. Jeff Davis, who is the lead investigator, said Johnson saw a shoulder bone and what appeared to be a human skull farther into the drainage area.
According to the report, Johnson returned to her home in the area and called 911. When Ramirez arrived, Johnson showed him where the bones were. After inspecting the skull without touching it, Ramirez sealed off the area.
When Davis and Chief of Detectives Maj. Thomas Cribbs arrived, they began collecting bone fragments scattered around the area, filling several paper bags.
Monday, Davis, along with several detectives, returned and recovered more bone fragments that had been scattered throughout the area possibly by wildlife. In addition to the bones, detectives found clothing and a handgun.
Davis said items found gave them an idea who the person was, but declined to make an identification until the remains were processed at the GBI Crime Lab in Savannah Tuesday.
"We have an idea who the person is,” Davis said “but we will wait till they are positively identified."
The detective told a Savannah TV station that his department does not have many ongoing missing person reports.
"The person who we have a missing report on was known to carry a gun when they went out," Davis said.