skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 134469 Find in a Library
Title: Positive Personal Identity of Skeletonized Remains Using Abdominal and Pelvic Radiographs
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:37  Issue:1  Dated:(January 1992)  Pages:332-336
Author(s): D W Owsley; R W Mann
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 5
Type: Report (Technical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Premortem and postmortem radiographs of the chest and abdomen are often available for comparison and provide a basis for making or rejecting an identification.
Abstract: The case reported here exemplifies the way that individualizing features, such as contours of bony elements, skeletal anomalies, and radiodensities and radiolucencies, are used to establish personal identity. The case involved a skeleton suspected of being that of a 76-year-old white male found in a heavily wooded area in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. When the body was found, bones were skeletonized except for remnants of dessicated ligaments holding the hips, knees, feet, and lower spine together. Based on the season when recovered, the terrain, the degree of skeletonization, sun bleaching, soil staining, and lack of odor, it was estimated the individual had been dead for about 2 years. The police provided the investigators with a premortem radiograph of the abdomen, pelvis, and upper leg portions of a suspected decedent. Ten similar skeletal features were noted on premortem and postmortem radiographs, and the investigators were able to establish a positive personal identity with reasonable scientific certainty. 5 references and 3 figures (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Bone analysis; Victim identification
Index Term(s): Autopsy; Forensic pathology; Pennsylvania
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.