Torso, Possible Heart Tissue Behind NYC Home Unveil Unknown 1970s Murder Mystery: Source

It's considered a new case because police didn't know about the killing before the woman called Monday

What to Know

  • Human bones found buried behind a home in Queens could reveal a decades-old murder mystery that the NYPD never knew existed
  • A woman called police Monday night to report she knew about a killing that took place in the late 1970s and where the body was buried
  • Sure enough, cops found skeletal remains at the spot; they're so old, though, the medical examiner is bringing in anthropologists to help

New details are emerging about the human remains discovered buried behind a home in Queens earlier this week, a find that appears to have unveiled a decades-old murder case the NYPD never knew existed.

A torso, hip bones and possible lung and heart tissue were recovered from the yard of the home in Richmond Hill, a law enforcement source familiar with the case told News 4 Thursday. Police believe the person was a man, likely between the ages of 30 and 35, though they have yet to confirm an identity.

Cops found the remains Tuesday morning, hours after a woman called police to say she knew about a murder that happened in the late 70s -- and she told them she knew where the body had been buried, the source said. 

Sure enough, police found the skeletal remains exactly where the woman had said they were -- behind a home on 115th Street, between 89th Avenue and Jamaica Avenue.

The bones are so old the medical examiner's office is bringing in anthropologists to help try to identify the person, the source said. At this point, investigators believe the murder happened between 1977 and 1979.

It's considered a new case because police didn't know about the killing before the woman called Monday. Cops are now going through old police reports, which were handwritten at the time, and sorting through missing persons reports that may have been filed in the late 1970s. They're also hoping to rely on the missing persons database; if the skeleton's DNA has a match in the system, they might be able to identify the individual, the source said.

Right now, it's not clear who the person was or how they died. But authorities are hoping to begin to unravel the mystery. The woman's connection to the case wasn't immediately clear. 

A neighbor told News 4 he has lived next door for 45 years and doesn't remember anything strange, but is hoping for an arrest.

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