Tipton County deputies investigate human remains found in woods - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Tipton County deputies investigate human remains found in woods

(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
Investigators are working to identify human remains found in Tipton County on Tuesday night. Crews were on the scene Thursday, hoping to find more clues.

Deputies responded to the 1000 block of Joe Joyner Road where two teens found the remains in the woods. Investigators believe the remains had been in the woods for a long period of time.

Tipton County Medical Examiner Dr. Buffy Cook confirmed that the skull found in the woods was from a human.

The human bones will be tested for DNA after teens found the human remains in a field. Investigators dug through the field all day.

They don't know who the body belongs to, but the family of a missing man says every time they see a story like this they hope for closure in their case that's almost a decade old.

Julie Goodman holds out hope the bones belong to her father – missing since Father's Day in 2005.

"It was like he disappeared off the face of the earth, nobody's seen anything, nobody heard anything, and it's been 10 years and we've heard nothing," she said.

Freddie Whitimore vanished after a jog in nearby Haywood County. The family suspects foul play.

Every time Goodman sees images of searches from Chopper 5 or hears human bones have been found, her mind starts racing.

Cadaver dogs and search teams are taking out all the human remains for an autopsy. Investigators don't know if the bones are from a man or a woman, how the person died, or how long the bones have been in the field.

"They'll look at all the bones for any type of injuries that could be on the bones, and anything else that we collect at the scene if there was indication of some kind of violence," said Deputy Chief Donna Turner with Tipton County Sheriff's Office.

The site is in a rural area.

Goodman knows there's a chance the bones aren't her father's, but she knows how it feels to miss a loved one.

"The next thought is if it's not him, that's someone's family," Goodman said.

She prays for the day that she is able to put away the newspapers and get closure in her case.

"To let out that deep breath and say it's over, we've never had that. We've never had it," she said.

Deputies are fielding calls from families with missing loved ones so they can take down information, just in case there is a match.

TCSO says its detectives are working closely with other law enforcement agencies to gather information about missing persons from West Tennessee.

Tipton County Sheriff J.T. Pancho Chumley says that until investigators determine the identity of the individual and the cause of death, the case will be treated as a homicide investigation.

If you have any information about this situation, please call the Criminal Investigations Division at 901-475-3300 or Central Dispatch after hours at 901-475-4300. You can also call in tips at 901-475-3307, email tips to sheriff@tiptonco.com, or submit tips via Facebook on Sheriff J.T. Pancho Chumley's page.

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