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Search and Recovery of Human Remains

As a certified forensic anthropologist, Dr. Passalacqua is an expert in the search and recovery of skeletal remains and associated evidence and has performed many searches as well as recoveries in the United States and abroad.

Search for human remains and evidence

The search for human remains and other evidence can be very complicated depending on the circumstances of the disappearance and the nature of the scene.


Dr. Passalacqua has led searches many searches in the US and abroad for remains that were located on the surface, buried, and submerged in water. 


Recovery of human remains and evidence

Once human remains are found, it is very important to document and recover the evidence so that no information is lost. Often only partial human remains may initially be found and having a forensic anthropologist available on scene often leads to finding and recovering additional remains using their expertise of how human bodies are affected by the environment.

Dr. Passalacqua has extensive experience recovering remains in both small and large scale scenes including plane crashes. 



Sometimes there is a need to exhume an individual that was previously buried. Often to collect DNA to facilitate identification or determine maternity/paternity, or to re-analyze the remains so that additional evidence can be collected.

Dr. Passalacqua can assist in exhumations as well as the analysis and sampling of these remains. 

Get in Touch

Contact Dr. Nicholas V. Passalacqua

Western Carolina University
Anthropology and Sociology Dept
101 McKee Building
Cullowhee, NC

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