GBI Forensic Artist Releases First Forensic Facial Reconstruction in Unsolved Case

October 20, 2016

Decatur, GA/Woodstock, GA – The Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s (GBI) Forensic Artist Kelly Lawson has released her first forensic facial reconstruction on an unsolved case dating back to 2013.  The case originated out of Cherokee County and Lawson recently performed this service based on the method of Forensic Facial Approximation (Reconstruction).  Forensic Facial Reconstruction is the process of recreating the face of an individual (whose identity is not known) from their skeletal remains.  The GBI forensic artist uses scientific methods of Forensic Facial Reconstruction as taught by the former GBI forensic artist, Marla Lawson. 

Over the years, the GBI has utilized forensic artistry in thousands of cases in the form of composite sketches that contain great detail and likeness to the perpetrators.  Many cases have been solved using this tool. 

On Sunday, July 20, 2013, skeletal remains were discovered in a wooded area in the 3000 block of South Cherokee Lane, Woodstock, GA.  Authorities believed that the remains were of human origin.  The individual was described as a black male between the ages of 40 to 60 years old and approximately 5’7” to 6’1” tall.  The remains also suggested that this black male had a lighter skin tone with brown tightly coiled curly hair.  This individual likely died some time between February and July of 2013 and could possibly have been homeless.     

The remains were submitted to the GBI Crime Lab and to date, they are unidentified.  Police are seeking the public’s assistance in identifying this male.  The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office is the investigating agency and can be contacted at 770-928-0239 with any information on the identity of the male and/or information that will assist in solving this case.


Contact: Nelly Miles | Nelly.miles@gbi.ga.gov | 404-270-8330