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Skull, Bones May Be Those of Missing Elsinore Boy

May 31, 2005|From a Times Staff Writer

A child's skull and other bones have been found in the San Bernardino Mountains near the area where a 9-year-old Lake Elsinore boy went missing last year during a camping trip with his family, authorities said Monday.

Hikers found the skull on Sunday about a mile southwest of the Hanna Flat campground, where David Gonzales vanished July 31. On Monday, about 30 search and rescue workers with San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department combed the area and found additional bones.

The remains have been turned over to the coroner's office, which will conduct DNA tests and review dental records to determine whether they match David, said Robin Haynal, a sheriff's department spokeswoman. The coroner also will try to determine the cause of death.

Haynal said the Gonzales family had been notified.

The family was camping at the Hanna Flat campground on the morning of July 31 when David said he was going to the family's pickup truck to get some cookies.

His disappearance sparked a nine-day search with as many as 260 people looking for him. Authorities said the boy may have walked into the mountains on his own or may have been abducted or attacked by an animal.

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