UPDATED 03/12/12 2:12 p.m.

GARY, Ind. (CBS) — A forensic anthropologist determined Monday that some bones that turned up in Gary, Ind., over the weekend were not human after all.

They were those of a dog.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports, Gary police say a man was walking in the 3500 to 3600 block of Chase Street near a set of railroad tracks in Gary around 8:30 p.m. Saturday, when he saw what appeared to be human bones.

Police initially said the bones might have belonged to a small child.

But the Lake County Coroner’s office said Monday that University of Indianapolis forensic anthropologist Stephen Nawrocki concluded the bones were not human. They turned out to be the bones of a dog, officials said.

Nawrocki specializes in studying how environments affect buried and scattered bones, as well as evidence at outdoor crime scenes.

Nawrocki has consulted on hundreds of such cases in Indiana and Illinois.

Earlier this month, some bones found elsewhere in Gary did indeed turn out to be human.

On March 1, an employee with American Water Co. called police after seeing bones in a weedy area just north of the Borman Expressway at 27th Avenue and Maryland Street in the city’s Midtown section.

When police arrived, they discovered a human skull, remnants of clothing and other bones at the site. The neighborhood is largely a wasteland, with only a few houses among numerous vacant lots. Trash, chunks of concrete and even an abandoned row boat are strewn about the area.

In that case, the Lake County Coroner’s office asked Nawrocki and his team to come to the scene to help with identifying and removing any skeletal parts. Investigators said there was likely at least one body at the scene.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2012. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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