Hunter finds human jaw north of Naches, remains identified - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Hunter finds human jaw north of Naches, remains identified

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09/20/16 UPDATE: NACHES, WA - The skeletal remains recovered by Yakima County Sheriff’s detectives on 09/16/16 have been positively identified as being the remains of Travis R. Carter of Naches. 

Mr Carter was reported by family members as being a missing person to the Yakima County Sheriff’s Office in 2013 when Mr Carter was 27 years of age. 

Family members reported back in 2013 that Mr Carter had not been seen since June 2012.  Mr Carter was identified both by dental records and by family members identifying items found with the remains located on Cleman Mountain as belonging to Mr Carter.

There is no evidence of foul play associated with the death of Mr Carter.  The cause of death can’t be conclusively determined. Prior to the disappearance of Mr Carter, he had disposed of his personal property and stated he was leaving the area. Mr Carter was then never heard from again. 

When Mr Carter was reported missing back in 2013, Yakima SO investigators examined the possibility that Mr Carter had simply relocated. Investigators were never able to obtain any evidence that Mr Carter had taken up residence or was transacting business at another location.

Family has been notified of the recovery of Mr Carter’s remains.


NACHES, WA - Over the weekend, a man hunting in a remote area of Cleman Mountain spotted what he thought was a human jaw.

The man contacted the Yakima County Sheriff's Office, and detectives were able to confirm that the jaw did in fact belong to a human.

After searching the area, more bones were found along with some clothing.

Yakima County Detective Sergeant Mike Russell says that no form of identification was found near the bones, but adds that the jaw will help them identify the person.

"That will go a long ways to compare to dental records of missing persons, and quite often the jaw bones with teeth can be good to help us get some needed DNA as well," said Russell.

Russell says that all the bones were not recovered, but some of the most vital bones were.

Although much isn't known, Russell says they believe the person may have died in 2012 or 2013, and there is no reason to believe foul play was involved.

Russell adds that it's not uncommon for the Yakima County Sheriff's Office to deal with cases like this one.

If anyone has any information on this case, they can contact the Yakima County Sheriff's Office at (509) 574-2500.