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Skeletal remains in Joliet Township may be woman: coroner

An open field in the 700 block of Patterson Road in Joliet Township seen on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. Three men discovered human remains in a wooded area north of Patterson Road on Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2022.

Skeletal human remains found Feb. 23 in Joliet Township may be a Black woman between the ages of 30 and 50.

Preliminary information from anthropologists has indicated the human remains may be that of a Black woman between 5 feet and 5 feet, 8 inches, according to a statement released Thursday by the Will County Coroner’s Office.

Further examination of the skeletal remains will be conducted with the University of Illinois’ anthropology department, coroner officials said.

“Again, anyone with a missing family member is urged to contact their local law enforcement agency to provide a DNA sample,” the statement said.

Joseph Swan said he and his two brothers-in-law, Maximo Caballero and Ted Christie, made the discovery of the human remains while walking in the woods behind Swan’s residence off the 700 block of Patterson Road in Joliet Township.

The eastern view of the 700 block of Patterson Road in Joliet Township seen on Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. Will County Sheriff’s Office is investigating human remains found on Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2022 in a wooded area north of the roadway.

Swan said he didn’t know if someone dumped the remains there or if it had been there for years. He said he called the police because he figured the family of that person needs closure.

When Will County sheriff’s deputies responded to the report of human remains Feb. 23, they discovered numerous bones, including a human skull, a femur and ribs, scattered about the heavily wooded area, police said.

The next day, investigators with the sheriff’s office conducted a search of the area. Assistance was provided by cadaver dogs from the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office, detectives and criminal scene investigation personnel.

“Members of the Will County Sheriff’s Office located additional bones and other items of evidentiary value,” police said.