- Associated Press - Saturday, February 11, 2017

BEREA, Ohio (AP) - A painful family mystery has been solved after authorities in Ohio’s Cuyahoga County recently identified a man killed by a train outside a Cleveland suburb nearly four decades ago using new technology.

The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner’s Office last week identified Michigan native Jim Williams as the man who was fatally struck in Berea on Nov. 14, 1980, Cleveland.com reported.

Sixty-eight-year-old Louie Williams told the news site he last saw his brother alive in 1974. His family had long wondered what happened to Jim Williams, an alcoholic and known drifter, after losing contact with him decades ago.

The medical examiner’s DNA Parentage and Identification Department solved the case by linking fingerprints taken from Williams when he was arrested as a teen for stealing a car to the unidentified body from the Berea accident.

Law enforcement officials in Michigan knew that the man killed in Ohio might be Native American. They contacted detective Sgt. Mike Pins of the Sault Tribe Police Department, who searched Native American tribal rolls and cross-referenced that information with traditional law enforcement databases to track down Louie Williams.

After speaking with Louie Williams, Pins was able to gather information on Jim Williams that led to his identification as Ohio’s previously unidentified victim.

Jim Williams was 35 years old when he was killed. His identification has helped bring closure to his family.

“All those years, my whole family, we never knew what happened to him,” said Louie Williams, who lives in California. “It was a big relief to finally find out.”


Information from: cleveland.com, https://www.cleveland.com

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