Authorities Work To Identify Victims in Serial Killer Case

Authorities Work To Identify Victims in Serial Killer Case

( – Herb Baumeister’s 15-year-old son found human remains in June 1996 near their Indiana home, a sprawling property known as Fox Hollow Farm. That discovery sparked a years-long investigation during which authorities found around 10,000 charred bones, many of which were fragments. They sought to piece together the mystery and identify the people. Baumeister, the founder of Sav-A-Lot, killed himself nearly a month later, but the push to put a name to the victims continued. The coroner and the FBI identified another victim as recently as last week.

According to Hamilton County Coroner Jeff Jellison, the thousands of burnt and crushed bone fragments could belong to as many as 25 victims. Through their investigation, authorities came to believe that Baumeister visited gay bars and lured men home with him. He then murdered them and tried to destroy their remains. He reportedly carried out these murderous activities when his wife and children went on summer vacations.

By 1999, authorities had identified the remains of at least eight people who died at Baumeister’s hands on his property. They ranged in age from 20 to 46. Authorities believe he’s responsible for at least 25 bodies found on his own property, and evidence links him to nine more victims — teenagers to adults — found in remote areas and ditches in both Indiana and Ohio.

In its efforts to identify victims, the coroner’s office has asked relatives of any young men who vanished in the 1980s and 1990s to contact the coroner and submit DNA samples. Technological advances now allow forensics experts to extract DNA from the bones and compare it to samples from relatives or databases.

In fact, authorities have already identified three victims using this method in the past several months, including Allen Livingston, 27, Jeffrey A. Jones, 31, and Manuel Resendez, 34. Jones was the most recent discovery, according to a press release dated May 21. The Indiana man was reported missing back in 1993.

The coroner will reportedly send four more DNA profiles to the FBI for analysis.

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