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Authorities seek information that will help identify man found in water near Sucia Island

The remains of a man found floating in the water near Sucia Island May 23 lie in the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s Office at Paine Field, awaiting identification.

Authorities are asking for the public's help in obtaining information that will help identify him.

A boater found the remains floating off Parker Reef, midway between Orcas and Sucia islands. The U.S. Coast Guard went to the scene, recovered the remains and took him to Friday Harbor to be turned over to the county coroner.

Prosecuting Attorney Randall K. Gaylord, who is also county coroner, arranged for the man to be taken to the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy. The autopsy results have not been released. Results from toxicology and other tests are expected to be received within six to eight weeks from examination, according to the Medical Examiner's Office.

“We have one good lead to help us identify this person,” Gaylord said in a press release. “We found a metal plate in the left forearm ... (A) dentist has examined the teeth and, if we could obtain the dental records, we might be able to identify this person.”

Gaylord and Sheriff Bill Cumming have reviewed missing persons reports and have been in contact with officials from Sidney, B.C., and Bellingham. Cumming alerted jurisdictions that surround the Salish Sea, including British Columbia and mainland Washington state.

Gaylord said the man weighed about 170-185 pounds, was 5 feet 10 inches, and apparently Caucasian. The body had been in the water for at least a couple of weeks and, because of decomposition, there was no clothing, hair, marks, tattoos or other distinguishing features.

Anyone with information should call the San Juan County sheriff, undersheriff or duty detective at 378-4151.

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