Sep 13, 2007

The pressing questions

It’s not the details that are missing. Dr. Rick Snow has a lot of specific details.

At the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s Forensics lab, Snow is drowning in details about the girl who was found murdered and burned in some woods in Clayton County.

What he doesn’t have is the sum of those details, the answer to the pressing questions: Who is she? What’s her name? Who killed her, dumped her in the woods and set her on fire?

“I can tell you what her weight is, within a gram,” said Snow, a forensic anthropologist. “I can tell you her height. I can give you her DNA, her fingerprints. I can get a retinal scan, if you want it. I can tell you every mark, scar or tattoo on the body. I can tell you the length of hair, the color of hair, if it’s ever been bleached and what style it’s worn in. I can tell you every mole on a body. I can tell you if [she’s] ever worn braces, every filling and cavity and any dental work that’s been done. Essentially, a complete biological profile, everything we need to identify her many times over. The problem comes in the comparison, because you have all this stuff, but if we have nothing to compare it to, it doesn’t do us a bit of good.”

One week after an off-duty Clayton County Police officer smelled and then found a girl’s body decaying in the woods off of Freeman Road, near the intersection of Shamrock Road, the GBI medical examiners have given the police a lot of information about the body, but authorities are still searching for the answer to the questions: Who is she and who killed her?

The girl was found the evening of Sept. 5. Her body was laying on the ground, about 30 feet from the busy road and about four or five feet off of an access road used by utility trucks.

Read the full story, Police, GBI working to identify girl found dead, at the Clayton News Daily.