Photo: AP Images
If fugitive ex-cop Christopher Dorner’s body is too burned to make dental or X-ray identification possible, coroners might have to follow an example set by Malaysian scientists. San Bernardino County Sheriff’s officers believe Dorner died Tuesday night when the mountain cabin he was hiding in burned to the ground.
He was cornered in the cabin after allegedly killing a cop and two civilians.
While his ID was found in the cabin, there is some speculation the charred body that was also found might not actually belong to Dorner.
If the body is too burned to be identified through usual means, the San Bernardino coroner’s office might have to mimic a technique Malaysian investigators used to identify 13 victims who were “burned beyond recognition” after a bus crash in Singapore, The Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.
From the Times:
Scientists extracted DNA from samples of “liquid blood, bone marrow and tissue” and looked for markers on four specific genes. Then they compared those markers with ones found in DNA obtained from blood samples provided by relatives. Those results, combined with the gender and approximate age of the bodies, allowed investigators to group the 13 victims into six families and then confirm the identity of each one.
There are other identification processes available as well, including extracting DNA from maggots that feed on the human body after death.
Correction: A previously published version of this article indicated the Los Angeles coroner’s office was responsible for identifying Dorner’s body. In fact, it is the San Bernardino coroner. The error has been corrected.
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