Ancient bones found at construction site likely a Native American man


INDIAN RIVER SHORES — A near intact and “very old” human skeleton found in June at a construction site is likely that of a Native American man, officials said.

The ancient bones were dug up by crime scene technicians and delivered to the Medical Examiner’s Office in Fort Pierce for testing, as required by state law. Medical examiners determined the remains belong to an adult man, and are too old to be of forensic value to any ongoing criminal investigations, according to police.

“The bones are definitely Native American bones,” Indian River Shores Public Safety Director Rich Rosell said Tuesday. “We didn’t find any fabrics or anything else that indicated the man was wearing modern clothing.”

The remains were found June 5 at the subdivision Blue at 8050 Ocean Drive, Rosell said.

“We can tell you the bones are very old,” said Christine Canard of the 19th Circuit Medical Examiner’s Office.

Construction resumed on the luxury oceanfront condo site except for the cordoned off area immediately around where the bones were discovered. Rosell said an archaeology team from the University of Florida will go to the site Friday morning and dig around for more bones and clues.

“They will come out with metal detectors to see if there’s anything that might support the theory this is a Native American man,” Rosell said. Rosell said the archaeologists might be in the area for a couple hours.

After the team completes its work, the site will reopen for developer Yane Zana to resume construction of his luxury condo community.

Shores’ officers previously searched for any evidence of foul play after the bones were found. “There was no evidence whatsoever,” Rosell said.

Native American tribes used to inhabit the area we now call Treasure Coast. Rosell said ancient remains of Native Americans are found from time to time on the barrier island.

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