Sheriff Graham Atkinson has announced that the partial human remains discovered in the Flat Rock community in April have been positively identified as belonging to a man missing since 2009.
The remains have been confirmed as belonging to Joseph Carl Pike, 35 at the time of his disappearance, Atkinson said.
Pike was last seen at his residence at 203 Badgett Avenue in Mount Airy on June 25, 2009, and his brother reported him missing on July 6, 2009.
Atkinson said a partial human skull was discovered on April 12 by a hunter in a wooded area off South Parkview Trail, who then alerted authorities.
Shortly after receiving information that the human remains had been discovered, several agencies assisted deputies in a grid search of the area, and cadaver dogs were also used at the scene but no additional remains were found, according to the sheriff.
“The bone fragment was sent to the University of North Texas for identification,” Atkinson said, noting that investigators also sent medical records and a DNA sample to assist in the identification.
The investigation into the death is continuing, the sheriff added.