Medical Examiner: Lab Delays Lead To More Unidentified Bodies

(CBS) — The morgue in Cook County now has the remains of more than 20 unidentified people, and that is more than it usually has at any one time.

WBBM’s Steve Miller reports.

They are all John Does or Jane Does. There are 22 of them at the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.

“The number is a little more than we are used to,” says Dr. Ponni Arunkumar, medical examiner.

There has been a delay in analyzing the DNA of the unidentified people.

“We usually send our DNA samples to the University of North Texas, and they’ve had some funding problems,” Arunkumar says.

A spokesperson for Cook County says despite the funding problems at that lab, it’s still accepting some of Cook County’s unidentified for DNA testing, and the county is sending others to the Illinois State Police lab.

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