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Bones Found Not Likely Jeanine Harms

No Match Made With Skull, Teeth Comparison

POSTED: 1:18 pm PST March 1, 2004
UPDATED: 2:19 pm PST March 1, 2004

The Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department reported Monday that some bones found last week in the woods above Los Gatos most likely are not those of Jeanine Harms, a 42-year-old woman who disappeared from her Los Gatos home in 2001.

A comparison of the skull's teeth and dental X-rays of Jeanine Harms are what reportedly made the determination.

Sheriff's spokesman Deputy Terrance Helm said the bones appear to belong to a woman and are probably about 2 to 3 years old.

A hiker alerted authorities after he found a skull near the Lexington Reservoir last Thursday. The skull was fairly intact, including the upper jaw and teeth.

A pelvic bone was also discovered and appears to be that of a woman between the ages of 20 and 35, Helm said.

Two days after the bones turned up, family and friends of Harms gathered in Los Gatos to dedicate a park bench in her memory.

Harms was last seen on July 27, 2001 leaving the Rock Bottom Brewery in San Jose with a male acquaintance. While her case was long investigated as a missing persons case, Los Gatos/Monte Sereno police eventually deemed the disappearance a homicide, which remains actively under investigation.

Last week's discovery wasn't the first time human remains were found in the Santa Cruz Mountains near Los Gatos. In 1995, the bones of 16-year-old Russell Jordan, a Los Gatos High School student slain by a classmate in 1982. Jordan's remains weren't identified until last March with the help of DNA technology.

DNA evidence also identified the skull of 7-year-old Xiana Fairchild, a Vallejo girl reported missing in December 1999. Her skull was discovered in January 2001.

The most recently discovered bones were sent to an anthropologist, who is working on a profile to determine the best possible age and nationality of the woman, Helm said.

The Santa Clara County Coroner's Office is not commenting on the case at this time.


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