Body found in Idaho cave identified as outlaw who escaped jail more than 100 years ago

Via AP

A body was found in an Idaho cave in 1979, and it has been a mystery ever since.

For 40 years scientists from Idaho State University, all the way to the Smithsonian and the FBI tried to figure out the mystery of who this man was. Not only that, but they didn’t know how long he had been in the caves.

They finally got their answer on Tuesday.

The man’s remains were so well preserved, there was still skin on the body. Anthropologists believed that he had maybe only been in the cave for five to 10 years. When the DNA finally put all of the genetic pieces together, they learned he had been in the cave since 1916.

“Through our research, following the tireless experts of innumerable experts, we have identified Clark County John Doe. His name was Joseph Henry Loveless,” DNA Doe Project team leader Anthony Redgrave said. “Joseph Henry Loveless was born Dec. 3, 1870, in Payson, Utah territory.”

Loveless was an outlaw, bootlegger, jailbird, and murder according to newspaper records from the time.

“This definitely threw most anthropologists — all anthropologists that looked at this (case),” ISU anthropology department assistant professor Samantha Blatt said.