UPDATE: Human remains found in Henry County are female

Cause of death hasn't been released, officials will now work to develop a DNA profile

Examiners have determined that human bones found in Henry County last month are female remains.

According to the Iowa Department of Public Safety, human bones found along Old Hwy 34 belong to a female between 24 and 32 years of age, standing between 5'3" and 5'7". The time of death is estimated to be during summer 2011 or early fall, a news release said. Cause of death has not yet been released.

On March 17, two children were riding their bikes from Lockridge to Rome, when they spotted a white object lying in the ditch between the road and railroad tracks. They discovered a human skull, and immediately told their parents.

The Henry County Sheriff's Office, Division of Criminal Investigation, Mt. Pleasant Police Department, and the Henry County Medical Examiner searched the area after receiving the report at 5:10 p.m., and found the human bones.

The DCI's Crime Lab will now work to develop a DNA profile to identify the remains, the release said.

In a previous article about the discovery, Mount Pleasant Police Chief Terry Sammons said  he hopes the remains are those of 24-year-old Jackie Douthart or 22-year-old Elizabeth Syperda, both of Mount Pleasant.  Douthart was reported missing in May 2011.  Syperda disappeared in 2000.

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