In July 2020, two hunters preparing for the fall season on their leased land in Ashland, KY made a grisly discovery when they stumbled upon a shallow grave. They found a young man, mostly skeletonized, lying face-down. Toxicology reports revealed that the young man had likely indigested drugs close to the time of his death. The PMI was estimated at 2 weeks to a month. The cause of death was gunshot wound. Its unclear if the man, also known as EastPark John Doe, was murdered elsewhere and brought to the grave postmortem, or if he was killed where his body was found.
EastPark is an industrial development center in Boyd County, KY, about one mile from I-64 and across from the Kentucky Veterans Cemetery North East. There is a small road near where EastPark John Doe was found, leading to a secluded lot where locals go for tailgate parties and truckers seek sleep before heading back to the highway.
Law enforcement has worked diligently to solve this case, exhausting all leads. Forensic DNA testing so far has not produced an identity for the young man, either. He remains unidentified, as does his assailant.
In 2021, the Kentucky Medical Examiner’s Office and Kentucky State Police Central Forensic Laboratory teamed up with Othram to use Forensic-Grade Genome Sequencing® to produce new leads in the case and help identify EastPark John Doe or a close relative. If you have information that could aid this investigation, please contact Detective David Boarman at the Kentucky State Police Post 14 at +1 (606) 928-6421. A DNASolves fund has been established to cover the costs associated with testing and research for this case. The police agency case number for this case is MEC-20-0498 and the case is logged in NamUs as UP73223.
About Othram Inc.
Othram is the world’s first private DNA laboratory built specifically to apply the power of modern parallel sequencing to forensic evidence. Othram’s scientists are experts at recovery, enrichment, and analysis of human DNA from trace quantities of degraded or contaminated materials. Founded in 2018, and located in The Woodlands, Texas, our team works with academic researchers, forensic scientists, medical examiners, and law enforcement agencies to achieve results when other approaches have failed. Follow Othram on Twitter @OthramTech or visit Othram.com to learn how we can help you with your case. Visit dnasolves.com to learn how anyone can make a difference in helping solve the next cold case.