Army Investigating Second Set of Skeletal Remains Found on Fort Bliss

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Cars wait to enter Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas, Tuesday Sept. 9,  2014. (AP Photo/Juan Carlos Llorca)
Cars wait to enter Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas, Tuesday Sept. 9, 2014. (AP Photo/Juan Carlos Llorca)

The Army is investigating the discovery of a second set of human skeletal remains in a training area on Fort Bliss, Texas, this year.

The Fort Bliss Provost Marshal's Office was notified Thursday of the discovery after a citizen walking in the Castner Range and Hondo Pass area called local law enforcement in El Paso, according to a base news release Friday.

Fort Bliss Criminal Investigation Command agents were dispatched, in coordination with El Paso medical examiners, to investigate the scene, which was located near a Border Patrol Station in northeast El Paso.

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"Indications are the remains have been there for quite some time, due to their condition," according to the release. "The remains were discovered above ground and there is no evidence to indicate they had been buried.

"There is no danger to area residents or the community," it added.

The discovery comes after another set of skeletal remains was found Jan. 10 at McGregor Range Complex off Highway 506, approximately three miles from another Border Patrol checkpoint. That location is about 75 miles north of where the remains were found Thursday, Bliss spokeswoman Lt. Col. Allie Payne told Military.com.

Officials at the Armed Forces Medical Examiner at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, have not completed identifying the first set of remains, Payne said.

The remains found Thursday will also be sent to Dover for identification, according to the release.

Army officials said they do not believe that the remains are those of Pvt. Richard Halliday, a Bliss soldier who was last seen July 23 and was listed as Absent Without Leave, or AWOL, when he didn't show up for duty.

"Although there is one active missing person case at Fort Bliss, initial findings do not indicate the two cases are related," the release states.

-- Matthew Cox can be reached at matthew.cox@military.com.

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