Nicole Alston : “Remains of Woman Found 16 Years Ago Identified Through DNA Evidence: Troup County Sheriff’s Office”

Death – Obituary – Accident and Crime News :

16-Year-Old Cold Case Solved: Deceased Woman Identified Through DNA Evidence

ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) – The Troup County Sheriff’s Office has announced a breakthrough in a 16-year-old cold case. Through DNA evidence, they have successfully identified the dismembered remains of a woman found at an intersection back in 2007.

On December 6, 2007, Troup County deputies responded to a report of a suspicious burning black bag at the intersection of Whitfield Road and Stitcher Road in the LaGrange area, as reported by the sheriff’s office. Upon arrival, the deputies discovered a smoldering bag containing human remains that were missing the head, hands, and feet.

The remains were subsequently sent to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s (GBI) crime lab for analysis. Unfortunately, the lab could only determine that the victim was a Black woman and that her cause of death was homicide.

Despite an extensive investigation, the case went cold, leaving the victim’s identity a mystery for over a decade. However, in early 2023, the sheriff’s office decided to revisit their cold cases, leading them to send evidence, including DNA samples, to Innovative Forensic Investigations, a Virginia-based genealogical investigative firm, and Gene by Gene Laboratories in Houston, Texas, for advanced analysis using DNA analysis and genetic genealogy forensics.

The results of the analysis were then compared to the database at the GBI crime lab. On Wednesday, the Troup County Sheriff’s Office received the news they had been waiting for: a positive DNA match had been made. The victim was identified as 24-year-old Nicole Alston, who had last resided in Manhattan, New York.

Investigators confirmed with Alston’s family that she had relocated to the Atlanta area in July 2006 and had not been in contact with them since. The victim’s identification marks a significant development in the case, and the sheriff’s office has stated that they will now proceed with their homicide investigation.

If you have any information regarding this case, please contact the Troup County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division at (706) 883-1616 or Crime Stoppers at (706) 812-1000.

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