Missing Ohio man identified as victim of unsolved Florida homicide

“Persistent detective work and DNA technology revealed that a missing persons case from Ohio and an unsolved homicide from Florida were one in the same,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said in a release. “This outcome brings closure to a family, long separated from their loved one.” 

Investigators recently matched Griffith’s DNA to previously unidentified remains recovered on Oct. 25, 1993 in Palm Beach, Florida.

“Through hard work and collaboration, we are pleased to have been able to provide closure for this family,” Ashtabula County Sheriff William Johnson said. “Continuing work on cold cases, and all cases for that matter, is crucial. Just because a number of years have gone by doesn’t mean it ever ends.”

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In February of 2019, the Bureau of Criminal Investigation received a tip regarding Griffith and opened a missing persons case with the Astabula County Sheriff’s Office. Through BCI’s Project LINK (Linking Individuals Not Known), DNA was collected from Griffith’s family and uploaded into the national Combined DNA Index System (CODIS).

The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office recently contacted the Center for Human Identification at the University of North Texas with a request to review the case tied to the unidentified remains, a release said. When Griffith’s DNA profile was uploaded into CODIS, it matched the profile submitted by BCI. Through additional DNA testing and more information from Griffith’s family, his identity was confirmed.

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