Friday, April 16, 2010

Wapato body identified as Joseph John

YAKIMA, Wash. -- The body of a man found in an irrgation canal near Granger has been identified as Joseph John, 19, of Yakima.

Coroner Jack Hawkins said John was identified by by dental and medical records as well as clothing that matched a description at the time of his disappearance last December.

An autopsy is scheduled for Saturday.

Sheriffs deputies said the body was found Thursday by a federal employee performing maintenance work on a diversion dam in the Marion Drain near State Route 22 and Track Road.

The body was badly decomposed but Hawkins said the man’s dentist confirmed dental records. John also had a steel plate in his elbow that established his identity, Hawkins said.

John, a Canadian living in Yakima, was last seen with Fernando Figueroa, 20, of Yakima, whose body was found Jan. 7 southwest of Toppenish. He had been shot repeatedly and wrapped in plastic.

No suspects have been announced in Figueroa’s death.

— Leah Beth Ward

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