DALLAS (AP) — A medical examiner believes skeletal remains found in a rural creek south of Dallas are those of a 10-year-old boy who was allegedly starved to death by his parents, a law enforcement official said Wednesday.
Ellis County Justice of the Peace Bill Woody said DNA tests are pending to confirm the remains found Saturday are Johnathan Ramsey's. He said the analysis by the Dallas County medical examiner's office is based on circumstances of the case as described by investigators.
A Dallas police spokesman said later Wednesday that no identification has been made by the medical examiner.
"A positive identification could take a few weeks since DNA testing is required," police spokesman Lt. Scott Walton said in an email to reporters.
The medical examiner's office declined to comment because the case involves remains found in another county.
Johnathan's father, Aaron Ramsey, and stepmother, Elizabeth Ramsey, are jailed on charges of felony injury to a child. Aaron Ramsey allegedly told police he left his son's body in rural Ellis County, south of Dallas.
A spokeswoman for the Dallas County District Attorney did not immediately comment on whether the charges would now be upgraded.
According to police records, Aaron Ramsey confessed to limiting the boy's meals to bread, water and sometimes milk, and confining him to his bedroom in the family's Dallas home, the Dallas Morning News reported. The boy eventually stopped being able to walk and began to eat his own feces, police said.
Johnathan was found lying on the bedroom floor in August, according to the records. Aaron Ramsey told detectives he changed his son into his favorite T-shirt, placed him into a sleeping bag and inserted a dryer sheet to mask the smell of his body, the records said.
An extensive manhunt to find Johnathan's body was briefly suspended due to poor weather, but eventually led to the discovery of human remains in the creek, police said.