Skull yields few clues on origin

— ALBANY — A skull found near Riverside Cemetery before Aug. 29 is offering few clues to investigators as to its origin and identity.

“The skull was taken to the GBI (Georgia Bureau of Investigation) lab in Macon for examination by medical examiners,” Dougherty County Coroner Emma Quimbley said Wednesday. “After that, it went to anthropologists and they gave me the information today.”

The information didn’t lead to any substantial conclusions about how the person died, where the skull came from or who it was.

Quimbley said the skull belonged to a black or Hispanic man, 30 years old or older and has been around less than 50 years as a skull. It also had glue holding the jaw together.

Considering that the jaw was glued and the skull polished, it could have been on display as a biology specimen, Quimbley said.

“There was no evidence of obvious trauma,” Quimbley said. “But we cannot say with certainty it was not a homicide.”

Albany Police Department investigators were not in receipt of the information from the GBI labs by 5 p.m. Wednesday, said Sonya Johnson, police spokeswoman.

The skull was found in a black bag sometime before Aug. 29 near the intersection of South Jackson and Front streets, but the unidentified man who found it kept it for a couple days before showing police where he found it.

Police spread out in the area, looking for any other remains or clues to the skull’s origin or identity. No other remains or clues were found.

The man who found the skull was collecting recyclable materials such as aluminum cans when he found the skull in a wooded area. There is the possibility the skull surfaced after the Flood of 1994 flowed through nearby Oakview and Riverside cemeteries, causing a number of caskets and remains to surface.