Illi­nois sher­iff IDs an­other vic­tim of John Wayne Gacy

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - WORLD -

CHICAGO — An Illi­nois sher­iff’s of­fice said Wednes­day that it has iden­ti­fied a Min­nesota runaway as one of the vic­tims of se­rial killer John Wayne Gacy. Cook County Sher­iff Tom Dart said in a news re­lease that the re­mains of a per­son whose body was found un­der the crawl space of Gacy’s Chicago area home in 1978 were those of 16-year-old James “Jim­mie” Byron Haak­en­son. The teenager had left his home in 1976 and was last heard from in Au­gust of that year when he called his mother and told her he was in Chicago.

Gacy was con­victed of killing 33 young men and was ex­e­cuted in 1994. Haak­en­son was one of eight of Gacy’s vic­tims who were buried with­out be­ing iden­ti­fied. Dart’s of­fice ex­humed the re­mains of all eight in 2011 in an ef­fort to iden­tify them us­ing DNA test­ing.

At the time, Dart asked that rel­a­tives of young men who van­ished be­tween 1970 and Gacy’s 1978 ar­rest sub­mit saliva sam­ples so that their DNA could be com­pared with the DNA of the re­mains. He said he hoped ad­vances in sci­en­tific tech­nol­ogy would al­low in­ves­ti­ga­tors to fig­ure out who the eight vic­tims were.

Two sib­lings of the teen were among the scores of rel­a­tives who sub­mit­ted saliva sam­ples. Dart said that there was a “strong ge­netic as­so­ci­a­tion” be­tween the sib­lings and the teen’s re­mains.

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