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Remains of boy seized 27 years ago identified

MINNEAPOLIS – The remains of Jacob Wetterling, an 11-year-old boy kidnapped from a rural Minnesota road nearly 27 years ago, were identified Saturday, authorities said, providing long-awaited answers to a mystery that has captivated residents and sparked changes in sex offender laws.

A masked gunman abducted Jacob in October of 1989 near the boy’s home in St. Joseph, about 80 miles northwest of Minneapolis. The Stearns County Sheriff’s Office confirmed in a statement that “Jacob Wetterling’s remains have been located” and that the Ramsey County medical examiner and a forensic odontologist identified them Saturday.

Additional DNA testing will be conducted and investigators are continuing to evaluate new evidence in the case, the sheriff’s office said, adding that authorities expect to be able to provide more details early next week.

A law enforcement official told The Associated Press earlier Saturday that a person of interest in Jacob’s abduction took authorities to a field in central Minnesota last week.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the ongoing case, said remains and other evidence were recovered and that the remains had been buried. (AP)