Dawes County remains identified

(Michael Munoz)

Dawes County Attorney Vance Haug says human remains found in a rural Dawes County field near the South Dakota border about 16 miles north of Chadron last summer have been positively identified as those of a Rapid City man missing for some 3 years.

Haug also says that although authorities now know that the remains belong to 35-year old Michael Munoz, the circumstances surrounding his death remain under investigation. Munoz had been reported as a missing person whose last confirmed contact was in Chadron on March 29, 2009.

The remains were found by a rancher moving cattle on his pasture last July 16, and Haug says evidence gathered by investigators at the site led officials to believe they were those of Munoz but couldn't locate a family member for DNA testing to confirm the identity.

Munoz was eventually identified after authorities got DNA samples from Munoz's mother and sister , who was living in Window Rock, Arizona

Since the investigation into his death is continuing, Haug asks that anyone with any information regarding Michael Munoz call the Dawes County Sheriff's Office at (308) 432-3025 or the Nebraska State Patrol at (308) 432-6131.

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