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Skull, bones belong to missing woman?

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RUSTY WELLER
Ellis County Press Managing Editor
MIDLOTHIAN - Just as Ellis County investigators sharpened their focus on the Charity Comes murder case, a farmer repairing his fence found a human skull, causing another full-fledged investigation.

The grisly discovery, made west of Midlothian in the far northwest corner of Ellis County, has led to conjecture of a second murder case. Ellis County investigators are considering the remains may be Deborah Whitson, a missing person who lived alone not far from where the skull was found.

Medical and dental records are expected to identify the person. DNA testing reportedly will take three to four weeks to a positive identification.

Investigators, led by Ellis County Sheriff Ray Stewart, are refusing to comment on the possibility of the skull representing a second murder case.

Cause of death has yet to be determined and may turn out to be natural. For instance, Whitson, missing since April 1998 at age 38, reportedly was taking medicine for high blood pressure and prone to seizures.

Investigators and trained dogs are searching the property along Old Fort Worth Road, according to Chief Deputy Charles Sullins. An FBI team aided the deputies in the search. Unconfirmed reports say more bones have been found near the skull.

'Once I found the skull, I called the FBI team, and they were here within an hour-and-a-half,' Sullins said.

A 400-acre area is being sectioned off and searched by the FBI team.

The skull and additional evidence is at the FBI Crime Lab, which reportedly first will perform DNA testing to identify the remains.

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