FBI excavates Colonial Parkway site for human remains

By Tara Morgan - bio | email

YORKTOWN, VA (WWBT) - The FBI spent hours today digging up what may be human remains possibly connected to the Colonial Parkway murders investigation that dates back to the 1980's.

We were the only station there when a cadaver dog picked up a scent Saturday during an independent search by the victim's families.

"The FBI's Evidence Response Team out of the Norfolk Field Office began excavating a 10x10 site just off the Colonial Parkway.

An archeologist is on scene to help determine whether the remains are historic or part of the homicide investigation.

Early Sunday, the FBI cordoned off the Bellfield Plantation site where less than 24 hours earlier, a cadaver dog, brought in by a volunteer search team, honed in on a scent.

The dog with K9 Alert Search and Rescue gave investigators a more specific location than the one brought in for a search by the FBI in January.

"There are cemeteries former cemeteries in the area at the same token the very spot that we are looking at right now is not a known cemetery area," said Alex Turner, the Special Agent In Charge of the FBI's Colonial Parkway murders investigation.  It includes the 1988 disappearance of Keith Call and Cassandra Hailey.

Keith's car was found abandoned at the York River overlook, a couples miles from the wooded area now under the microscope.

By 9am, the meticulous excavation started which included clearing away thick brush and photographing the site.

"It'll be scoop by scoop hand shovels and brushes," said Turner.

By mid-day, they had dug down about 18 inches.

At one point, a metal detector was used, but didn't reveal evidence.

Keith Call's sister, Joyce, followed the cadaver dog on Saturday to the site which park officials say had been closed to the public for decades.

 "When we were there earlier that day and the dog had a hit it was interesting but I didn't think a lot was going to come of it," said Joyce Call-Canada.

Joyce remains cautiously optimistic.

"I understand it could be anything they say it's human remains but that doesn't necessarily mean it's Keith and Cassandra but it still could be," said Joyce Call-Canada.

Should the FBI uncover human remains they would have to bring in a medical examiner which would lengthen the process by two to three days. 

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