Bones Found Near Victorville Belong To Missing So Cal Family - New York News

Bones Found Near Victorville Belong To Missing So Cal Family

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San Bernardino, CA -

(FOX 11 / AP) The remains of two of four bodies buried in the desert near Victorville have been identified as missing husband and wife Joseph and Summer McStay but it remained unclear Friday if the other bodies were that of their two young sons.

The McStays and their boys, Gianni and Joseph Jr., went missing from their home in Fallbrook in February 2010. The family's 1996 Isuzu Trooper was found abandoned four days later in San Ysidro, near the U.S.-Mexico border.

Friday, news media sources confirmed with a family member of the McStays that two bodies were found in a remote area are those of Joseph and Summer McStay.

Patrick McStay confirmed the family has been contacted by law enforcement from the San Bernardino County sheriff's office and was told that four humans were discovered in two shallow graves, two of those bodies are that of Joseph and Summer McStay. He says at this point the other two bodies are being identified and don't know if they are the bodies of the children.

Patrick McStay says for four years this has been a huge struggle for the family and says he knows his son would have tried to make contact after all these years to let them know he's okay. 

"He would not have left or done anything without calling me or his mother," he said. "And for almost four years now, he would have picked up that phone or gotten word to one of us that they were out there and okay."

Sheriff's officials said a forensic anthropologist would assist in conducting the autopsies to determine the causes of death, ages and gender.

San Bernardino sheriff's officials will hold a news conference at 11 a.m. Friday to make an announcement in the case. 

THIS IS A STORY UPDATE. AN EARLIER STORY IS BELOW. 

A relative of a missing Fallbrook family confirmed to news media sources Thursday night that bodies found in the desert near Victorville belong to their loved ones.

Patrick McStay says two of the four bodies found in a shallow grave have been identified as his son Joseph and daughter-in-law Summer McStay. But the couple's two missing sons are still unaccounted for, while investigators confirm the identities of the other two sets of remains.

Patrick McStay could not confirm whether the identified remains were children or adults.

The McStay family mysteriously vanished in February 2010, leaving their dogs abandoned and food on the counter. The San Diego Sheriff's Department ruled in 2012 that the McStays voluntarily went to Mexico on their own.

Deputies and coroner's investigators were digging through two shallow graves in the Mojave Desert for three days after the bodies were discovered. It all began when an off-road motorcyclist reported near Interstate 15 found bones that turned out to be human, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said in a statement.

Sheriff's homicide detectives and coroner's officials on Wednesday wrapped up the excavation in barren scrubland on the outskirts of Victorville.

Victorville is in the high desert about 60 miles northeast of Los Angeles. No homes or businesses are near the gravesite.

"There were two graves where remains were located as well as additional skeletal remains ... near the graves," the statement said.

A third site that appeared to show some disturbed ground was also dug up but investigators determined it was unrelated to the gravesites.

Authorities went to the site near the Interstate 15 freeway on Monday after an off-road motorcyclist reported finding bones that coroner's investigators later confirmed were human.

"It appears the remains have been there for an extended period of time. Age and gender are unknown pending examination by a forensic anthropologist," the sheriff's department statement said.

"It is difficult at this point to state how long it will take to determine the causes of death," sheriff's spokeswoman Jodi Miller said.

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