The Woodward News

Local News

July 3, 2014

Skeletal remains found near W. S. Key

Woodward, Okla. — On Wednesday, some local citizens using metal detectors in a pasture owned by the Department of Corrections near William S. Key Correctional Center in Fort Supply stumbled upon what are believed to possibly be the human remains of an inmate who escaped during the winter of 2012.

According to Amy Elliott of the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s office, the agency is in receipt of “skeletal remains” from the find, but has not yet begun to process them yet.

“I will just be honest, when they are skeletal remains, it takes a long time,” she said. "Our anthropologist called and left me a message about this."

According to Woodward County Sheriff, Gary Stanley, the issue came to light Wednesday when some bones were discovered with other effects (such as personal clothing effects) near them in a field adjacent to William S. Key. The appearance of the bones with the effects led the citizens to believe the remains might be human and needed to be reported, Stanley said.  

According to Department of Corrections Public Information Officer, Jerry Massie, it is possible the remains are those of Michael J. Weber, who escaped from the prison on Jan. 7, 2012 and was never heard from again.

Weber was last seen at 9 p.m. on a Friday, Jan. 7, 2012 during a routine head count. He was confirmed missing an hour later at the 10 p.m. count.

According to Elliott (Oklahoma Medical Examiners Office), the skeletal remains are in no way classified by race, gender or age and so there has not been a confirmation of the identity of the individual.

Thursday, personnel from the Department of Corrections and the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office spent the day in the Fort Supply pasture processing the scene for more evidence, Stanley said.

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