Local News

Human Remains Found at Johnston Home Still Unidentified

Posted November 21, 2006

Nearly a year has passed since the gruesome discovery of human remains at a rural Johnston County farmhouse, and investigators still haven't positively identified the bodies.

When the remains were found under the farmhouse and in a freezer beneath a shed at the home of Robert "Bobby" Bruce and Cecillia Louise Pollard at 1294 Lizzie Mill Road in February, investigators said they were convinced they were the bodies of Robin Clark and her boyfriend, Caesar Ortiz, who both lived at the house and disappeared in 1997. State DNA tests linked the remains to the two earlier in the year.

Forensic investigators in Texas are now reconstructing the remains, which were in poor condition when they were found.

"The remains were sawed up, burned, separated and buried in different locations," said Johnston County District Attorney Tom Lock.

Lock said the forensic work will help determine who is responsible.

"We are trying to determine whether or not the injuries are consistent with the statements that have been made," he said.

According to a search warrant, Louise Pollard said her husband, Bobby, shot and killed Caesar Ortiz. According to Louise Pollard, Clark later committed suicide. Louise Pollard and Clark were half-sisters.

The reconstruction could show if that explanation is viable. Lock said the case doesn't hinge on the forensic work.

“We simply have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a crime occurred and that the suspect committed the crime, and I think we can do that,” Lock said.

Bobby Pollard is charged with murder, and Louise Pollard is charged as an accessory. Both remain behind bars while the investigation continues. No motive for the crime has been released.

The State Bureau of Investigation was not asked to identify the remains in this case. While the SBI does some body identification, its focus is to find DNA for crime scene evidence.
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