UPDATE: Leg Bones Found In Shallow Grave At Cemetery

Teams of state and county investigators, along with archeologists from East Carolina University unearthed what lawmen believe are bones from a human leg.

Chief Deputy Brian Hardison with the Washington County Sheriff's office says the bones begin just above the knee and go down.

Charles Ewen is a professor in the Anthropology department at ECU and director of the archeology lab. Ewen says the bones were wrapped in gauze and that they could also be from the lower part of an arm.

The discovery of bones in a shallow grave was made Sunday by a cemetery crew preparing a grave site for a burial near Plymouth in Washington County.

It took all day Monday to carefully dig up the bones, buried about a foot and a half under the surface in a plastic tarp or bag.

The State Bureau of Investigations will work to identify the remains.

Hardison says they have a couple of unsolved missing persons cases in the county, but until they get more information on the bones they'll be unable to connect them to any cases.



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Crews preparing a grave site for a burial near Plymouth in Washington County discovered what may be human remains wrapped in plastic in a shallow grave.

Instead of mourners surrounding a grave at Hillside Memorial Gardens, a team of investigators is trying to figure out exactly what a grounds crew found about a foot and a half below the ground.

They were digging Sunday when they found something they didn't expect: Bones in a blue tarp or bag in a grave that was supposed to be empty.

Sheriff's investigators taped off both entrances to the cemetery. Those working the case include the Washington County Sheriff's Office, the State Bureau of Investigations, and an archeology team from East Carolina University.

Investigators say it's too early to speculate on who the bones may have belonged to. At this point they're not even sure if the remains are human.

Investigators say the cemetery staff has been very cooperative and investigators are trying to work quickly to not disrupt burial services scheduled throughout the week.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by nrs Location: nacodoches tx on May 2, 2011 at 06:20 PM
    IAM FROM PLYMOUTH,MY FAMILY STILL LIVES THERE.I LOOK AT THIS WEB PAGE TO GET NEWS AND TO SEE WHAT IS GOING ON IN PLYMOUTH.ALL OF YALL WHO THINK THIS IS A JOKE..WHAT WOULD YALL DO IF YALL KNOWED THIS PERSON.OR SAY THIS PERSON GOT KILLED.WOULDNT YOU WANT TO KNOW WHO DONE THIS...AS MAKING ALL THOSE JOKES IT SHOWS WHAT YOUR EDUCATION IS.NOTHING...I BELIVE WHEN EVERTHING IS DONE WITH.SOME OF YALL WONT BE UP HERE LAUHGING.,,,GET A LIFE FIND A JOB...WASHINGTON COUNTY NEEDS HELP ON THIS,GOOD LUCK
  • by really people Location: Plymouth on Apr 20, 2011 at 09:31 AM
    After theses comments I have read I am ashamed to say I live in Washington Co. with such cold hearted people. I just hope it's none of you receiving that phone call or personal visit stating its your family member. Who cares who make the announcements. the main point is they found remains that belong to someone. May God be with the family once they are able to determine who the remains belong to. Prayers are also being said to those who made ignorant and unjustified comments.
  • by seriously Location: plymouth on Apr 20, 2011 at 07:40 AM
    When people keep making ignorant comments about such a serious matter it makes me feel sick. There is nothing funny about this. I personally am related to one of the missing persons form Washington county and it breaks my heart that you people could be so insensitive and cruel. I hope that they will discover who the bones belong to very soon. At least it may give someone closer if not my family. Also, I don't understand why people have to make every single thing related to the election. People get a life.This matter has absolutely nothing to do with it. If you are so concerned about who is being elected then maybe next time you should run. See if you can do a better job.
  • by tax paying citizen Location: Washington Co. on Apr 19, 2011 at 09:33 PM
    To Casey Welles Brian Hardison is making the statments because he is the Chief Deputy hired to handle these situations. The Sheriff of this County is a very good man and one that Sheriff Whitehurst would have been proud of.He is a honest man who does the best he can for this county. How about backing the D Sheriff and his deputies instead of trying to find fault.And No I am not in law enforcement. I've just been around long enough to know a good man and Sheriff when I see one.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Apr 20, 2011 at 02:33 AM in reply to tax paying citizen
      The new election can't get here fast enough.
  • by Casey Welles Location: Plymouth on Apr 19, 2011 at 08:30 PM
    You know what is really interesting to me as a citizen of Washington County? Why isn't the sheriff making the statements and not Brian Hardison? Once again proof of who is running the sheriff's office and not ol "Frowny" there is no way he can be smiling. Just goes to show that he is not the person to be sheriff and we need someone who can and will do the job...sorry for the loss of life and I hope those who are responsible will be brought to justice, but I am sure when they are brought to justice, it will not be by the sheriff!
  • by Craven AG on Apr 19, 2011 at 01:52 PM
    that is scary.isnt it?? sorry to the family
  • by Have A Heart Location: Plymouth on Apr 19, 2011 at 11:49 AM
    People are up here cracking jokes but you wouldn't be making jokes if you had a missing family member who lived close to that site.It just shows how ignorant some people are.To the family,I won't mention names but maybe we'll have some kind of closure soon.Praying for your strength during this time.......
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Apr 19, 2011 at 12:47 PM in reply to Have A Heart
      I agree with you. This people are cruel and heartless. I hope had pray they find out whos remains they are.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Apr 19, 2011 at 06:21 PM in reply to Have A Heart
      I agree, but when you say "to the family, I won't mention names" you act like you know who this is.
  • by Jay on Apr 19, 2011 at 09:41 AM
    Could be someone who wanted to give their amputated leg a proper burial.
    • reply
      by LOL on Apr 19, 2011 at 11:11 AM in reply to Jay
      I was thinking the same thing!!
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Apr 19, 2011 at 05:26 PM in reply to Jay
      Do you really think so? I don't.
  • by booger Location: enc on Apr 19, 2011 at 09:10 AM
    The leg bone's connected to the....hey...wait a minute. it ain't connected to nothin'!
  • by thump on Apr 19, 2011 at 08:54 AM
    look out grandma!!!when you hit chester the molester and killed&buried him!!!you did'nt go deep enough!!!
    • reply
      by wash. co on Apr 20, 2011 at 05:53 AM in reply to thump
      you people are sick. these bones belonged to someones child or mother or someones father or grandparent. how about grow up stop acting like childish teenagers! i hope they find out whose remains these are and maybe their family can finally have some peace!
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