Sask. first RCMP division to solve investigation into human remains through DNA program
REGINA -- The Saskatchewan RCMP says it used the National Missing Persons DNA Program (NMPDP) to identify the remains of an Edmonton woman who went missing in 2016.
Mounties say this is the first time the program has been used by the RCMP to solve an investigation. The NMPDP, which is operated in partnership with the National Centre for Missing Persons and Unidentified Remains and the National DNA Data Bank, has helped identity remains six times, including five times for other police forces.
The remains were found in an area near Maymont, Sask. on July 24, 2018. They were in a remote rural area, several hundred metres away from the North Saskatchewan River, the RCMP said in a news release.
Several units worked together to recover the remains and search the area. They were compared to outstanding missing persons cases in Saskatchewan and Alberta, but Mounties say they couldn’t find a match.
Investigators worked to build a DNA profile, which was compared with profiles in the national data bank.
The DNA profile matched Cheyenne Partridge, who went missing from Edmonton in 2016.
Her identity has been confirmed through the Edmonton Police Service and the Saskatchewan Coroners Service, the RCMP said.
Edmonton police are still investigating her death.
“Having a loved one go missing can be very traumatic for a family, and it was very important to investigators that we identified Cheyenne so that she may be brought home to her family and provide them with a sense of closure, ” said Cpl. Kelly Bates with the Saskatchewan RCMP Historical Case Unit.
The Saskatchewan RCMP says it’s no longer involved with the investigation, but will continue to assist the Edmonton Police Service as needed.
“While the cause of Cheyenne’s death remains undetermined, the investigation remains open,” said Sgt. John Smith with the EPS Missing Persons Unit. “We will continue to explore and investigate any information we receive relating to the death of Cheyenne.”
Anyone with information should contact Edmonton police.