Ouray County Sheriff’s Office and Othram Team to Identify a 1987 John Doe

Investigators are working to identify a man whose remains were found in Ouray County, Colorado in 1987.


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Published March 19 by Michael Vogen
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In November 1987, the skeletal remains of an unidentified individual were discovered in Ouray County, Colorado. It was determined that the partial skeletal remains were that of a male. The remains were transported to the University of North Texas for further testing where anthropologists estimated that the man stood 6’1” in height and was between twenty-five and fifty years of age at the time of his death. However, investigators were unable to make other determinations about the man, including his ancestry, weight, eye color, hair color, or cause of death.

Since the discovery of the unknown man’s remains, law enforcement investigators have diligently pursued various leads about the unknown man’s identity. Following the discovery of the remains in November 1987, the case was entered into the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) as case number UP60579. Despite the exhaustive efforts of law enforcement, the man’s identity has remained a mystery. With few leads for investigators to pursue, the case went cold.

In 2023, the Ouray County Sheriff's Office teamed with Othram to determine if advanced forensic DNA testing could help establish an identity for the man or a close relative. Anyone with information that could aid in this investigation is encouraged to contact the Ouray County Sheriff’s Office by calling 970-325-7272 and referencing agency case 19OR-2780 or NamUs ID UP60579.

Ouray County Sheriff's Office has contributed a portion of the funds necessary for the casework and a DNASolves crowdfund has been created to raise funds for the remaining casework costs. Anyone can contribute here. We are grateful for your support.

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Michael Vogen

Michael Vogen

Director of Case Management

2829 Technology Forest Blvd Suite 100, The Woodlands, Texas 77381

Michael works with law enforcement agencies throughout the United States and Canada on “unsolvable“ cases that can benefit from advanced DNA testing methods. He helps these agencies use cutting edge DNA sequencing and new forensic techniques to develop investigative leads for their cases.

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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 ... Read morerecovery, 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. With dnasolves.com anyone can make a difference and help solve the next cold case.